Monthly Archives: March 2015

Weeks 23 & 24 – Today I Begin a New Life

The past 2 weeks have been nothing short of amazing.  On Monday, March 16th I spent the day getting things “in order” so the rest of the week I could disconnect from my routine, my people, dogs, business and familiar surroundings, disconnect from distractions and devices…..and enter into The Silence.  My daughter’s friend had recently bought a “cabin” on a quiet lake in Baxter, MN and she offered it to me for the week.  So I left home Monday night and returned Thursday afternoon.  I spent two and a half days in an absolutely gorgeous, warm, welcoming home located on a secluded point on one of central Minnesota’s beautiful lakes.  Winter’s ice was still on the lake so there was no activity or noise except the music of nature in early Spring.  Tuesday was warm and sunny with clear skies;  Wed cloudy and chilly.  It was perfect – total solitude.

I have always savored my “alone time” and love quiet, so for me this was not difficult. Whenever I travel I always feel a sense of peace and joy the moment I leave the city and get on the road.  But it’s been years since I’ve really unplugged and NEVER have I experienced such connection with nature – and with myself – than I did last week.  I spent a lot of the days immersed in the outdoors, feeling truly connected and part of nature’s beauty (not merely observing it).  I felt in harmony with everything around me……..while totally drawn inward, connected and harmonious in the world within.

I did many long “sits” up there, lost track of time, stared for hours at my movie poster and took tons of notes so I could remember everything that came to me – many wonderful ideas, so much insight about myself, clarity and honesty with myself and an important application of the Law of Forgiveness.  I discovered things about myself that have been right in front of me my entire life, yet I could not see them before.  Things that affected my marriage, my other close relationships and my even my business relationships that have kept me from being my best.  And what’s really cool is that as I discovered these things I was not hard on myself at all.  Instead I felt great joy and freedom.  Peel off the layers, expose the real spirit and love who you see!  Hello, Lori Suzanne Hammond Enrico!

And one last share…
For weeks we have been creating, flashing and shuffling a growing stack of index cards that keep us constantly immersed in gratitude and reflecting on our accomplishments.  Mixed in are some key thought-provoking cards that we use to “stack the deck”.  The big one for me was this:   “What am I pretending not to know?”  After one of my long sits last week I couldn’t grab my notebook fast enough.  After struggling with and pondering this question for weeks, a multitude of answers came to me.  It was huge.

The week before my trip my husband (Rick) got wrapped up watching the Week 22 replay with me – the one where Mark, Davene and Trish talked about the comfort zone.  In that webinar they taught us how the 5 negative emotions that typically keep us locked inside our comfort zone (fear, anger, guilt, hurt feelings and unworthiness) can be turned around and used in a positive way instead to help us grow and manifest our DMP.  This was also the webinar when they asked us to consider getting away for an extended Silence.  Rick was personally impacted by the video – and instantly urged me to make this Silence a priority.  He is such a loving, compassionate and supportive person and is always ready to get behind anything that makes me happy.  But he’s been very entrenched in his own routine, safely in his comfort zone, yet increasingly discontent with certain aspects of his own life. We’ve been happily married for many years, though often walking on separate paths.  It’s now apparent we’ve both been packed down with cement and holding ourselves back by the River of Dreams.  Since I returned from my retreat Rick and I have had many wonderful conversations about our future and what we want.  It’s a time of transition for both of us, as individuals and as partners.  But it feels like a new beginning.

The MKMMA experience has awakened me out of a 40 year sleep.  And I LOVE being awake!  Just imagine the ripples I will create!

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Week 22A – Silence Scheduled!

I am so grateful to my daughter’s friend who has offered to let me use her cabin to get away next week.  I will enter into the Silence on Monday afternoon and plan to return home on Thursday morning.  This is something that I truly look forward to and just getting it scheduled is very empowering.  I think it’s ironic and interesting that it’s such a big deal for a person to unplug from all forms of media and personal interaction for a couple of days.  For many of us, this is the first time we’ve ever even attempted anything like this – which, when you think about it, seems a little sad.  Where and when do most people find solitude?  Seems to be a forgotten art.  I am grateful for the opportunity to take this peaceful adventure and will plan to share my experience next week.

My husband watched the replay of Week 22 webcast with me and he found it very impactful.  The comfort zone lesson really hit home for him.  He was very supportive of me taking the time I need to get away and I appreciate my whole family for taking care of everything else.  Many reasons to be grateful.

Until next week, my fellow MKMMAer’s.  I appreciate all of you!

Week 22 – Fear and Gratitude

In this week’s Master Key webinar we learned how to take the 5 feelings that typically keep us stuck in our comfort zone – Fear, Anger, Guilt, Hurt Feelings and Unworthiness – and use them instead as tools to step out, advance our DMPs and become our authentic selves.  Throughout this course we’ve learned to become The Observer – to notice our own behaviors, reactions and feelings – and gradually, through practice – apply what we’ve learned to gain control of our thoughts and emotions.  To become self-reliant and successful people.

No sooner had I watched this video, feeling all-powerful armed with this new insight, when life handed me an opportunity to really feel the intensity and enormous energy of fear, while simultaneously watching myself react.  And afterward….I was given the opportunity to seriously augment my feelings of gratitude.

Enter Callie:

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5 lb, 4.5 month-old mini dachshund who found me last Christmas at the post office – and who has seriously stolen my heart.  She’s so TINY….and always under foot!

Last week one day I opened my refrigerator and before I had time to react, a LARGE, heavy glass jar full of marinated artichokes fell from the top shelf.  The moment stood still as I watched the jar make what appeared to be a direct hit onto Callie’s tiny head.  I watched it fall….tried to catch it (but couldn’t)…..vividly remember hoping she wasn’t under foot…… realized she was…..prayed it wouldn’t hit her head….and then it did.  Her terrible cries will haunt me for a long time.  They continued for what seemed like 10 minutes – it felt like an eternity – but I expect is was really only 15-20 seconds.  My husband and son tried to calm me down but I was hysterical, even after Callie calmed down, stopped crying and looked docile, yet alert and normal. Unwilling to “wait and see” I called the vet, swooped her up and took her in to be evaluated.   After lots of rational discussion during the examination, my vet was able to talk me off the ledge and convince me I hadn’t permanently hurt or killed my little girl.  The flood gates opened in the car on the way to the vet as I relived the moment and thought of the implications.  When I walked out with her I couldn’t stop the tears and gratitude swelled up inside me as my mind accepted the fact that she was actually going to be OK.  In retrospect – I expect Callie moved quickly enough that though the jar only grazed her head and half of her screaming was out of fear.  Still, it was traumatic for both of us.

So here’s why I wrote about this incident.
I am not an irrational person, nor someone who typically reacts with panic to a crisis….quite the opposite, actually.  I used to be a scientist, a health & safety instructor for the Red Cross, head of a corporate Hazmat team, trained in emergency response, for Gods sake.  I don’t lose it in emergency situations!  But hurting a family member or one of my dogs is one of my worst nightmares – and I had just heard a story earlier that day about someone’s tiny dog that fell off a couch, hit it’s head just right and died (gee, do you think that may have played into my reaction?).  I don’t know….it all happened so fast.  But here’s the thing.  During the whole process it was like I was 2 people – one reacting to the situation, fearing the worst.  The other – a trained observer – watching myself, noticing my feelings and having a dialog…. and plenty of judgement….. about how I was reacting.  Having just learned about re-channeling the energy of fear into something productive- my old blueprint emerged bigger than life and starting judging me harshly because I hadn’t somehow perfected this technique in the last 2 days.  Because that Old Blueprint has always thought she should be perfectly in control, with all the answers, solving problems for everyone. Here was the dialog:  How could you be so careless and have a jar of artichokes so close to the edge?  Why didn’t you catch the jar in the air?  Why didn’t you gate Callie out of the kitchen in the first place?  And by the way, Lori….why  the Hell, after everything you’ve learned in MKMMA so far, are you not in control of yourself right now?

Fast-forward to post-check-up gratitude:
I am in love with that little puppy.  She’s been a pain in the butt to house break and with my husband laid up and a busy household I’ve  been frustrated with her plenty of times.  I’ve had numerous pity parties about how stressful the past 6 weeks have been.  But Callie has also brought immense joy and laughter to my household.  And she returns my love 10-fold every time I hold her, play with her, etc and it delights me to look at her!  Since the “incident” – I have found endless patience with her and constant gratitude that she is OK and that she is our healthy, new family member.

Wrap up – the insight.
Life gave me an opportunity last week to REALLY FEEL genuine, legitimate fear – not the stupid kind I create myself that keeps me inside my comfort zone, not picking up the phone or taking action in my business.  But the kind that happens when someone you love is hurt and you have to act swiftly to help them.  Because I’m an “MKMMA’er” – I was given the ability to live through the experience with my eyes open and my mind engaged.  I noticed a lot of things that I totally would have missed in the past. And because of my constant awareness and focus on gratitude now (reflecting back and writing up 3 cards of gratitude every day),  this incident gave me an extraordinarily intense, lasting feeling of gratitude, which I recall every time I look at Callie.

Those other feelings of fear I create to fence me into my old comfort zone?  I welcome them!  And I will continue to NOTICE when they visit – and practice USING THEM to escort in my new reality!

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Week 21 – On Boundaries

My daughter recently forwarded me an email that she received from a mentor and coach of hers on the topic of boundaries.  I wanted to share some of her thoughts because they resonated with me and and I felt they could be helpful to others.  One thing she pointed out was that a big component in the practice of self-responsibility is setting boundaries….something she felt many women struggle with.  “Of course, it’s not entirely our faults”, she wrote.  “We’re taught that being nurturers, caregivers, and putting others needs before our own is how to love, right?  Wrong. ”

I’d like to share her insights:

“Thank you for taking care of your needs.”
I went to an event a few weeks ago where we practiced saying yes and saying no.When someone said no, “Thank you for taking care of your needs” was how we were instructed to respond to their no.
This response and the why behind it has been reverberating my Life so much since then.
When someone says no, not only is it not personal or a rejection, it’s a beautiful thing to witness.
It’s beautiful because that person is honoring themselves. If you’re the one saying no, you’re honoring yourself.It’s not your job to please others.
Saying yes when you’d really rather say no is dishonorable to both you and whomever you’re lying to. Because that’s what it is, a lie.
So honor your no, honor your yes, above all else, honor yourself and TRUST.
Trust yourself.
Trust that people can handle your no.
The other thing Monique Darling, the facilitator of that event explained is that when you can trust someone’s no, you can trust their yes. Because when someone is comfortable saying no, you know that their yes always means yes.
Gorgeous.
So this is a great place to start with boundaries.
Identify the places where you’ve been saying yes and meaning no. And, practice not taking it personally or as a rejection when someone says no to you, but rather honoring that they are taking care of their needs.
Feels good, right?