Experience The Power of Love — Without A Lover!

worry less now power of love
Murphy

A mystic sees beyond the illusion of separateness into
the intricate web of life in which all things are expressions of a single Whole. You can call this web God, the Tao, the Great Spirit, the Infinite Mystery, Mother or Father, but it can be known only as love.
—Joan Z. Borysenko, Pocketful of Miracles

 I just love this quote from Borysenko’s wonderful daily meditation book! The power of love is priceless!

Too many believe romance is the only source of such love. The truth is, it’s available within you at any time. A few months ago, my dear friend, Janet, wrote this about her epiphany while reading 50 Ways to Worry Less NowIt really made my day!

Janet’s Connection with The Power of Love

“I want you to know the ripple effect your book is capable of creating. On p. 40, “Focusing on Loved Ones,” I focused on my innocent, sweet little puppy, Bella, as she lay on my lap, and I felt the goodness/love she often brings within me. Then I read further, and encountered the sentence, “I wondered if my positive power might feel that same sweet love for me.” This threw open a door inside me, so that I realized I never truly saw myself as Good. I have rationalized to myself that I am good, as I try to do/be good. But I suddenly saw that I didn’t truly believe it. In that instant, I realized both the fact that I AM good and that I had always deep-down, failed to see it. Once I did, I was filled with the joy of seeing myself that way.”

Worry Less Now, Page 40, Chapter 3 “Claim Positive Power”

“Choosing goodness over fear definitely pays off. In the Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, Barbara Fredrickson and her colleagues confirm that immersing yourself in feelings of love and appreciation lowers depressive symptoms and increases life satisfaction. Try the following simple exercise to experience these benefits.

“Tool 10. Focusing on Loved Ones: Think about the joy you feel when you focus on a person or pet you love . . . not the manic high of romantic love, but one more solid and enduring.

– Bring to mind someone you hold dear and with whom you are at peace, perhaps your child, grandchild, sister, brother, dear friend, or spouse. If you have a four-legged child as I do, it might be your kitty or puppy. If possible, directly observe or look at a picture of your loved one.

– Breathe in and out slowly, feeling love filling your mind and heart as you ponder the one you cherish.

– Continue breathing and directing your attention to the experience of love.

– Your feeling of peaceful joy and appreciation reflects your positive loving power.

“One day as I watched my little gray kitten, Murphy, purring on my lap, I felt so much love for her. I wondered if my positive power might feel that same sweet love for me. It was then I realized that I could invite this love to fill the gaping holes I felt inside me.”

Give it A Try & Let Me Know!

Why not give the exercise a try and feel how lovable you really are? Immersing yourself in the power of love and goodness –as often as you can!–guarantees a happier outlook in 2019!  Let me know how it goes; I’d love to hear from you.

GET 20% off Award-Winning 50 Ways to Worry Less Now: Reject Negative Thinking to Find Worry Less NowPeace, Clarity, and Connection.  5-stars on Amazon. Use “20lessnow” code here (Seattle Books).   No discount from Amazon. Find e- book links at gigilanger.com.

Worry Less Now; Gigi Langer
From me to you!

Gigi Langer has been clean and sober for 33 years, and holds a PhD in Psychological Studies in Education from Stanford University. She’s a sought-after speaker and retreat leader who has helped thousands improve their lives at work and at home. 

 

 

To Enjoy 2019, Let Go of Resentments

worry less nowWhat would 2019 be like if we let go of all complaints and resentments? If we could admit that perhaps we’re not always right, and released the wounds and conflicts of the past? What if, when we thought of a person we didn’t like, we refused to gossip, criticize, or hate?

That might make for a pretty happy 2019, right?

I’m talking about forgiveness: We leave others’ misdeeds in the past, realize we’ve made similar errors, and find compassion for our common imperfections. It does NOT mean “forgiving and forgetting” or putting up with more mistreatment. When we object to someone’s behavior, we can set boundaries. But we don’t continue to hate them.

A LESSON IN FORGIVENESS

In William P. Young’s best seller, The Shack, the main character, Mack, is grief stricken and cannot shake his overwhelming sadness and anger after his daughter is abducted and killed.

One day, he receives a mysterious invitation to go alone to a shack in the woods. When he arrives, a heavyset black woman flings open the door, enfolds him in her arms, and says, “Welcome, Mack! I’m so glad you came!” She asks to be called Papa, the name his lost daughter and wife had used for God. Soon he meets Jesus, a Middle Eastern man wearing a tool belt; and Sarayu, a diaphanous presence of goodness.

Throughout the weekend, these three teach Mack about love and forgiveness. In one scene, Mack goes to a cave to meet Sophia, who is sitting in a large, raised judge’s chair. She fixes her eyes on Mack and cautions him not to consider his daughter’s death as a tragedy, leaving only pain in its path. Sophia tells him our human perspective is too limited to perceive the perfect order of things; therefore, we need to stop judging and surrender our thinking to a wiser power.

Later, after Mack asks if he must stop hating the man who killed his daughter, Jesus replies, “Forgiveness is . . . about letting go of another person’s throat.”

When Mack asks how to do this, Jesus suggests saying, “I forgive you” a hundred times for a few days. He adds that such acts of forgiveness would open Mack’s heart and bring God great joy. He follows this advice and finds freedom from his overwhelming pain.

YOUR OWN FORGIVENESS WORK

Do you have a situation or person that stirs up negative feelings in you? Perhaps it’s time to begin working toward forgiveness by using growth practices such as prayer, meditation, therapy, or 12-step work. Also, I’ve experienced great healing with Colin Tipping’s Radical Forgiveness

You’ll know you’ve forgiven a person or situation when you can no longer generate the “hot” feelings of anger, self-righteousness, or sadness listed on the left side of the table below. Your renewed perspective is softer and more peaceful, as shown on the right.

Non-Forgiveness (Worry and Fear) Forgiveness (Peace and Joy)
Resentment or anger Freedom to give and receive love
Judging others and myself Seeing the essence of goodness in others and myself
Hating and attacking through words or thoughts Remaining openhearted and compassionate toward others
Thinking I would be better than that (Pride) Realizing that we all make mistakes (Humility)
Resisting life through frustration or irritability Accepting life by being in the present moment
Wishing things were different and attaching to those outcomes Trusting perfect order through non-attachment
Defensiveness and insecurity Peace, trust, and courage

As you release the negative, more love flows into your life and out to others–it’s the very best way to live! I wish you a happy and resentment-free new year!

GET 20% off Award-Winning 50 Ways to Worry Less Now: Reject Negative Thinking to Find Worry Less NowPeace, Clarity, and Connection.  5-stars on Amazon. Use “20lessnow” code here.  No discount from Amazon. Find e- book links at gigilanger.com.

Worry Less Now; Gigi Langer
From me to you!

Gigi Langer has been clean and sober for 32 years, and holds a PhD in Psychological Studies in Education from Stanford University. She’s a sought-after speaker and retreat leader who has helped thousands improve their lives at work and at home. 

 

 

MAKE A 2018 GRATITUDE LIST!

worry less now gigi langer
From Unsplash

Dear Blog Followers,

We hope you and your loved ones are well and we send our best wishes for a happy holiday season and a wonderful 2019.  As you know, “counting your blessings” is a great way to feel better about almost anything. So, here are a few of my favorites from 2018 . . . plus the next big goal!

Gigi’s 2018 Gratitude List

  • You and all “Gigi Langer” followers. Without your appreciation and enthusiasm for what I write, this site would not exist. You motivate me to share ideas and experiences that might be helpful or inspiring. And I absolutely LOVE it when you comment on my posts–both here and in FaceBook. So, here’s a big THANK YOU for your encouragement!
  • An active and fun life. Peter (my 4th husband–yup!) and I will celebrate our 30th anniversary in 2019. I’m so grateful that we still love every moment together. We both play a little golf and enjoy time with friends. Peter’s got lots of  home projects going, and I’m still very involved in supporting my own and others’ recovery from addiction and alcoholism.
  • Our families. We are all well and happy. A few have left us: my mother in Dec. 2014 and our brother-in-law, Kyran, last spring.  I enjoy time with my sisters and brother, and with Peter’s family. Every year we all realize how precious are the hours together.
  • Inspiration and service. For the past few years, I’ve been attending A Course in Miracles study group at Karen Casey’s home. This is such a gift, as she’s long been one of my writing idols (So many of us in recovery have used her daily meditation books, e.g., Each Day a New Beginning, from Hazelden.) I’m also so grateful to my fellow Board Members of the Ann Arbor Women’s Group; for 11 years we’ve been connecting women in sobriety!
  • Live music. This year we saw The Music Man (Peter’s favorite), My Fair Lady, Martin Sexton (if you don’t know his music, check it out here; he’s phenomenal, especially live), a full performance of the Messiah (it “took me to church”), and Peter’s favorite group Manhattan Transfer (masters of vocal-harmony-jazz). Last week we attended Irving Berlin’s “White Christmas”  and the song “count your blessings instead of sheep” prompted this gratitude list.
  • I published my book! 50 Ways to Worry Less Now: Reject Negative Thinking to Find Peace, Clarity, And Connection was a huge endeavor, occupying most of 2012-2017. Possum Hill Press published it in February 2018, and it has already earned great reviews on Amazon and from Publisher’s Weekly (BookLife), Midwest Book Review, and The Library Journal. Last summer, it received the 2018 National Indie Excellence Award in the self-help category.
  • The next project. One of my biggest life surprises occurred when God tapped me on the shoulder and had me enthusiastically running up to my office to write a book. Now that it’s completed, he’s sent another little nudge: Make an audio book! It’s taken me a while to warm up to the idea, but I’m doing it (How can you say “No!” to God?).  Check out  my first 3 videos showing how I’m approaching this task. They’re on YouTube too (Gigi Langer). Here’s the link for the fourth video, Gigi Makes an Audio Book, part 4.

Perhaps you too will make a gratitude list for 2018. Focusing on the good things brings more of the same into your life. I’d love to see your list!

I give thanks for every one of you who reads what I write, and look forward to our continued partnership in giving and receiving love.

worry less nowA shameless ad from Gigi: Order my book on Amazon (free shipping with Prime) OR go to www.gigilanger.com, click on Seattle Book Company, and use “20lessnow” code to lower the price (to reimburse you for shipping). If interested, also check out my blog and/or my FaceBook (FB) posts. Finally, if you will (or have) read the book, I’d appreciate your reviews on Goodreads, FB Gigi Langer Author, and Amazon. Thank you!

Gigi Langer has been clean and sober for 32 years, and holds a PhD in Psychological Studies in Education from Stanford University. She’s a sought-after speaker and retreat leader who has helped thousands improve their lives at work and at home. Her new book is available from Amazon, and in various formats here .

THE BEST GIFT OF ALL: COURAGE!

worry less now courage   I don’t know about you, but when I face a big challenge, I need time to muster the courage to begin. Since I’ve taken on so many things that initially scared the crap out of me, I’ve learned to accept my initial doubts as part of the process, and then work my way through them until my courage returns.

You may remember I wrote that I would begin recording my audio book of 50 Ways to Worry Less Now on December 5. Well, technically, I DID begin, but that involved 2 weeks of  dealing with my fears!

During that time, my negativity whispered to me, “It’s too much work! It’s too technical! You won’t be able to do it! It’s going to cost a fortune anyway!” I’m so familiar with such fears, I went into my “gain courage” mode with the following actions.

  • Attended spiritually-based meetings (e.g., A Course in Miracles and 12-Step groups).
  • Stepped up my prayer and meditation practice.
  • Posted an affirmation on my bathroom mirror: “I create a wonderful audio book in a wonderful way; I offer wonderful service for wonderful pay.”
  • Met with my spiritual advisor to share my concerns and gain a new perspective.
  • Asked my support team (that includes you!) to visualize me holding a completed and successful audio book.
  • Listened to expert advice about how to create an audio book, and kept telling myself, “You can do this.”
  • Set up my new microphone in a prominent place so I could “make friends” with it.
  • Forgave myself for my impatience and irritability while I waited for sufficient courage to begin the project.
  • Enjoyed golf, spending time with my husband and friends, and going to the pool.

A week ago, when I texted my niece to wish her a happy 17th birthday, I included a few things about our holiday plans and my desire to make an audio book. She replied, “I’m really excited you’re recording an audio book. You should film the process on your phone so we can see. I have always wanted to see what it is like to do that!”

Boom! The turning point had arrived! My niece’s words ignited my enthusiasm and I immediately made a 5-minute video sharing how I connected my microphone and loaded the recording software. It was so much fun! In the next few days, I recorded two more episodes showing all the materials I was studying and how I made my first recording. Now I’m pausing during the holidays while I prepare the manuscript for reading and practice my narrating skills.

In the meantime, here are my videos!   Disclaimer from a former perfectionist:  I’ll get (a little) better at videos, but my main focus is getting the audio book done; so videos aren’t polished.

Thank you for sharing the journey with me. It’s a lot more fun with buddies who follow along, and I’ve already gotten some good suggestions for making audio books. If you have any tips, please send them along.

Finally, I’m wishing to all who celebrate Christmas:  Have a wonderful holiday. And my hope for all of us: A happy and joyous New Year!

Gigi Langer has been clean and sober for 32 years, and holds a PhD in Psychological Studies in Education from Stanford University. She’s a sought-after speaker and retreat leader who has helped thousands improve their lives at work and at home. Her new book is available from Amazon, and in various formats here .