Let it shine, let it shine, let it shine!

As the sun shines in my apartment on this beautiful (almost) winter’s day, I am reminded of so much light, positivity, and happiness that I am blessed with in this life. More so than that, the sun reminds me to SHINE.

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Image by jubileelewis

We were so lucky last night to have a holiday get-together with friends old and new and truly catch up on the exciting and sometimes frightening unknown of THE FUTURE…dun dun dun.

There was a common theme of existential uncertainty in all of our conversations: “life is good for right now, but….”, “I’m not sure if this is what I want to be doing forever, but….”, “How did this whole adult-hood thing happen? What’s next….”

If you’ve been reading my posts, you may also notice a common theme, I LOVE to give advice.  I truly believe in the positive, I truly believe in trusting a Greater Plan, and I will always try to advise the silver lining and find the positive in any situation.

I had a moment of clarity while I was listening to my friends’ existential internal conflicts and while I was finding a way of spinning to the positive last night. If you read this far, here comes my unsolicited advice!

We all have this light. Like the children’s song, “This little light of mine, I’m gonna let it shine!” It is our personal light; the positive side of our personality. Our sense of humor, our courage, our strengths, our compassion, our empathy, our love.

Sometimes, our light gets covered up. Sometimes there are circumstances or events or words exchanged or [insert what upsets you here] that shovels a scoop of dirt and darkness over our light. With conscious thought, we can quickly sweep away the dirt and darkness and continue sharing our light.

But sometimes, the circumstances are too constant, too overwhelming, too heavy to quickly sweep away. We let the darkness, dirt, toxicity sit there and become our new norm. We become detached from our light and we feel like a piece of us is missing. We feel like we have lost the warmth of our soul.

When this happens, we can do two things: one) we can accept the darkness and let this new norm consume us and live knowing “something isn’t quite right, but I can learn to be okay with how it is now.”

Or two) start the intense, mindful, conscious process of shoveling away the darkness.

“Hide it under a bushel. NO! I’m gonna let it shine.”

How does one start this intense, mindful, conscious process of removing the dirt, you ask?

  • Trust in your family, friends, faith! Talk it out, cry it out. Your family and true friends will love you unconditionally. You may even experience comfort in knowing that you are not the only one feeling this way and you can work on shining your light together!
  • Practice self-care! Even if it’s taking a few minutes each day to listen to music or sit in silence.
  • Keep a journal that focuses on Gratitude. Gratitude is a CHOICE. Be mindful, be conscious, be appreciative and watch that dirt disappear and your light shine through!
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Image by BK
  • Be open to change. If something is not making you feel like your true self, have the courage to lean on your loved ones and “take a risk, take a chance, make a change, and breakaway” (thanks, Kelly Clarkson!)
  • Practice patience. When weeks, months, years have passed with your light being hidden, it will take weeks, months, years of conscious work and heavy shoveling to chip away the layers of dirt, toxicity, and darkness.

You are unique. You are beautiful. You are enough. YOU ARE RADIANT. Let your light shine bright. Be a beacon of hope and an anchor of love.

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Image from PublicDomainPictures.net

Brightly yours,

Ariana xo

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Sometimes, you have to follow…

I learned a valuable lesson this afternoon and I had to share.

My husband, bless him, knows how much I love to dance – around the apartment, in the car, moving down the street – and I’m ALWAYS trying to get him to partner dance with me (but really, it’s dangerous for all parties involved). For our anniversary he got us ballroom dance lessons to boost his confidence on the dance floor and to quell my lofty ‘Dancing With The Stars’ dreams.

Since I’ve been taking dance lessons for most of my life, I feel like I know a thing or two about rhythm. I instinctively become the dance leader when we are dancing at weddings, parties, and when my husband gives in and dances in the kitchen with me.

Leading has become a common theme in my life. It was second nature to me to come up with plans and carry them through, so naturally I became a teacher, an instructor, and a coach. But recently, I recognized the incredibly important need to still be a student, to continue to learn from others, to close my eyes and LET SOMEONE ELSE TAKE THE LEAD.

There is something so therapeutic about letting go of thinking and planning and just being. Allowing others to lead you through a workout, a flow, a routine, a lecture, a meeting, a class, a mass, a meditation, a conversation. You don’t have to be “on”, you just have to be present.

So today, I closed my eyes and let my husband take the lead around the dance floor. Tomorrow, I will close my eyes and let my instructor lead my workout or my practice. The next day, who knows! That’s the beauty of allowing yourself to follow! I do know that each day, I will consciously be thankful for all of my blessings and my opportunities to learn, to grow, and to follow.

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Image from pixabay.com