Sexual Harassment – Enough Already (my story)

Bill Cosby, Roger Ailes, Harvey Weinstein, Bill O’Reilly… just a few of the high profile sexual predators who were finally exposed.

Not one of them has really, truly apologized for their horrible behavior and the pain and suffering they have caused.

Weinstein blamed it on the “culture of his time.”  As someone who came of age in this culture, there were many times when my “bosses” came on to me sexually in the workplace.

The first time it happened, I was just out of college, working as a photojournalist for a weekly entertainment paper in Fort Lauderdale.  One day, the boss (whose name I have now forgotten, but I do recall he had a huge beer belly and wore white patent leather shoes) walked into my darkroom which was dimly illuminated by a red safelight.  With a sickening sneer on his face, and while grabbing himself, he asked: “Would you like some of this?” I put my hands in the developer pan and told him he if he took one more step I would throw the acid-based chemicals in his face, which sent him running. (I have no idea if this would have done any damage to him or not). It never occurred to me to quit this job that I loved and there was no one to tell.  It was a small staff, run by his much younger wife.

I thought I handled it pretty well considering….

A few years later, I was working for local government and had a boss who was telling other people that we were sleeping together.  The worst part for me was that he was such a dweeb that I was embarrassed that anyone would think that I had sunk so low to be with a creep like him.  This time, I did tell someone – my Dad (a politician) – and he arranged for me to have lunch with a man in the waste removal business known as Big Frankie, to share my story.  The man spreading the rumors, Tommy, was a well-known civic leader.

Over lunch, in a dark Italian restaurant, I shared my story with Big Frankie.  When I walked into my office later that day, the phone was ringing and Tommy was calling to apologize to me, profusely, promising to never do it again.

Another time it happened was when I had my own business and one of my clients would always proposition me by phone.  He was literally begging me to meet him in a hotel while graphically describing in detail what we would be doing.  I didn’t want to give up the client (my business was new, the money was good, and I was doing a great job getting him PR). There was no one to tell, so I figured out a creative way to make it stop.

One day I said to him, “When your wife calls and tells me I have her permission to F$*K your brains out, then I’ll be a yes.”

That was the end of that. He never asked again.

My hope is that the era of women being sexually harassed will be over and the new culture will be one of safety, equality, justice, and fairness.

I am also hoping that these sick men get psychological counseling, mend their ways, and sincerely apologize to all those who have been harmed by their appalling behavior.

Wishing you love, laughter, and magical kisses,

Arielle

Forgiveness: Essential For More Love

Maybe it’s just me, but when someone does something mean or upsetting (to me or anyone I know and love), I find getting to real forgiveness is super hard.

 

I just want to dig in and make them bad and wrong, and I find myself thinking of ways to get revenge.  And yes, I know better, and in spite of “not wanting to,” I do make myself forgive… even if it sometimes takes me a while to get there.

 

At its essence, forgiveness is the willingness to let go of the hurt and give up suffering.

 

It’s a decision to no longer find value in anger or blame and it’s a letting go of the desire to judge another or ourselves because of something that happened in the past.

 

It’s a choice to feel love rather than to judge or condemn, and it’s often not easy… and it doesn’t mean that we forget… but we do let go.

 

Forgiveness is something we do for ourselves so we no longer have to carry negativity.

 

It releases us from the past and allows us to heal and let go and be more at peace in the present moment.

 

When I am stuck in “I’ve been done wrong,” one of the practices that works well for me is to sit down and write a letter to the one I need to forgive. This is not a letter that will ever be sent, but a chance to write down and FULLY express how hurt and wronged I feel… to write down what happened from my perspective.

 

Once I’ve written it all down… I add to the end of the letter, “I forgive, you, I bless you and I set you free.”

 

Then, I write a second letter from them to me.  I actually channel them and have them tell ME the story of what happened from their perspective… which usually results in finding out that they never really meant to cause harm… and then, I end that letter with “I forgive, you, I bless you and I set you free.”

 

When it comes to love, I know that being able and willing to learn to forgive is essential to all healthy relationships.  And sometimes, it’s necessary to forgive and to also eliminate certain people from your life if they are toxic or detrimental to your core happiness.

 

Wishing you love & freedom,

 Arielle

 

See Something, Say Something!

People are suffering.

All around us, there are loved ones, friends, co-workers, neighbors who are suffering in silence.

They don’t know how, can’t, or won’t ask for help.

If you ask them how they are, they will smile and tell you they are “fine,” or “great,” or “getting by.”

And, in your gut, you know something is off.

We have been trained to look out for unattended or suspicious packages or luggage and when we do, we know to “say something.”

I think we need to extend this to people.

It could be a life-saving gesture to simply respond to the statement, “I’m great,”

It could be a life-saving gesture to simply respond to the statement, “I’m great,” with a little love and compassion in your voice saying:

“Well, if things aren’t totally great or you need something, or if you want someone to talk to, please know I am here for you. I love you, I care about you and I’m your friend.”

And, if you know for sure they need help, take it to the next level and tell them what you see and make a stronger offer.

You don’t have to be an expert on their problem, but you can be an advocate for their well-being.

The world is experiencing massive stress right now, individually and collectively.

We need to be more “inter-dependent” and lean on each other for support.

Remember, if you see something, say something.  It could save a life.

Wishing you love, laughter, and magical kisses,

Arielle

P.S. For those of you with a deep desire to manifest a soulmate…I want to remind you that your soulmate is ALSO seeking you! Come spend the weekend with me for my workshop at the beautiful spiritual retreat center, Omega Institute, in Rhinebeck New York August 25-27.  All the details are here!

What’s Your MISERY set point?

Lately I’ve been thinking a lot about the inevitable “aging and decaying process.”

I witness my own body and mind as I struggle with various aches, pains and wrinkles, as well as that of my friends and family.

There are days when I just hate it.  I cringe, complain, whine and moan….

In spite of knowing that I often do the best I can to offset the reality of time and gravity, I began to ask myself “why do I have so much resistance to what is so?”

I realize there no use in being miserable over things that I don’t have a lot of control over.

The last time I was in this deep of a quandary, I was in my mid-twenties.

I was severely depressed and having suicidal thoughts, I was on medication, and seeing a shrink.

In one of our sessions she said the most dreadful and life-changing thing to me: “I don’t think you are depressed enough.”

WTF?????

I couldn’t imagine being even more depressed than I already was.

Getting out of bed to go to work took every bit of effort I had.

Her words haunted me and as I thought about them I realized that I had to be willing to dive into the deepest, lowest depth of my depression and be willing to see what happened.

So I did.

And I discovered that not only could I survive being at the lowest possible point, allowing myself to go there gave me the motivation to fight my way out of it with everything I could muster.

I committed to figuring out how to heal myself and I realized that I needed to focus on how to be happy instead of focusing on how not to be depressed.

It didn’t happen overnight.

It actually took a few years.

But, what did change, was that I let go of the fantasy of finding the “magic bullet” fix.

I decided to begin to study the happy people that I knew (this was long before the internet or Google) and it worked.

I discovered how to take baby steps.

I learned to appreciate the moments, or hours, and eventually days and months when the depression lifted.

And slowly I transformed.

Whatever level of misery you are experiencing, the way out is through.

Feel it. Heal it. And most importantly focus on how you MOST want to feel – even if it means faking it until you make it.

Wishing you love, laughter and magical kisses,

Arielle

Marianne Williamson on love & tears

There’s an old saying that before you meet your prince, you might kiss a lot of frogs. And most of us have.

We might chuckle at that, but the truth is that the “wrong” relationships are not just wrong – they’re painful. Have you ever thought about how many tears you’ve cried over love affairs and marriages that didn’t work?

The pain of heartbreak is some of the deepest pain we experience in life, and that’s why I’m excited that my friend Marianne Williamson has written a book specifically dedicated to that: how to endure our suffering when times are tough, and most importantly how to get ourselves back up again and be even more prepared for life and love than we were before.

Here is an example of Marianne’s wisdom from her new book, Tears to Triumph: The Spiritual Journey from Suffering to Enlightenment:

 

tears-to-triumph-3d-275“The universe itself is intentional, guiding all things to the actualization of their highest potential. This includes not only individuals, but also relationships. Love is always seeking us. The problem is how often we hide from it, scurrying away from the light of love into the darkness of our fearful selves. It wasn’t that love didn’t show up for us; it’s that we didn’t show up for love.

 

A Course in Miracles says that our job is not to seek love, but to seek all the barriers we hold against its coming. Those barriers, those walls in front of our hearts, are the places where we turn our backs on love. We do various things to keep love at bay, from behavior ranging from needy to controlling, dishonest to manipulative, avoidant to addictive, too hot to too cold, self-centered to smothering. These character defects are not where we’re bad, but where we’re wounded. Still, no matter what childhood experience might have caused those defects to begin with, they’re our responsibility now. When we are displaying our rough edges, other people don’t think, ‘Oh poor dear, you’re wounded.’ They’re more apt to think, ‘Oh Lord, get me out of here.’ Which totally makes sense.

 

So, time and time again, we find ourselves blowing it at relationships – with friends, with colleagues, with family, with partners. And once again, the only real problem is our separation from God. The key to fostering soulful relationships with others is fostering our primary relationship with God, for there, we are healed of the pieces of false self with which we so often sabotage our relationships. In my relationship with God lies my relationship with my true self, and only when I’m aligned with the truth of who I am can I align with the truth in you.”

 

Once again, Marianne has hit the nail on the head. She points to the darkness so we can expose it to the light, and in so doing, illuminating the path to love. I highly recommend her book for its extraordinary depth of compassion for the tears we’ve suffered, and its practical wisdom for how to dry them. Even more importantly, says Marianne, we can do even more than dry our tears – we can learn from them, and become even better at love than we were before.

 

Whether you are single, in a relationship, or somewhere in between coupled, Marianne reveals that true healing and transcendence can only come when we finally face our pain and wrestle with what it has to teach us. She offers us a powerful way forward through the pain, to a deeper awareness of our feelings, our lives, and our true selves.

 

Get her new book, Tears to Triumph: The Spiritual Journey from Suffering to Enlightenment today!

 

Wishing you love, laughter, and magical kisses,

Arielle

When Life Sucks

Whether you’ve lost your job,

Been dumped by a lover,

Had a family member or friend (or you) get seriously ill,

Or someone has died…

There are days, even months or years, when life sucks.

Surviving these times with grace isn’t easy, but it is possible.

When this happens to me, the first thing I do is allow myself to feel as upset and miserable as I do.

Trying to suppress my true feelings, ignore them, or pretend they aren’t there is just a set up for more bad feelings.

Next, I share my feelings with someone I really trust. Someone who won’t automatically try to “fix” me but has enough emotional intelligence just to sit and listen and hold the space for me. Someone who can be with me in all my misery. (These are rare people, choose wisely.)

 

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Then I go into research mode and look for solutions that might make the situation better or more tolerable. And, if I find solutions, I don’t try to do everything at once but rather take baby steps.

And, I also take time to chill out and give myself a break by eliminating responsibilities that can wait while I sort things out.

I take time to remember that even though things suck right now, it won’t always be this way. In fact, most of the best things that have ever happened to me were initiated or a result of the worst things that have ever happened. (Really!)

Most importantly, I make a daily gratitude list of all the good in my life.

Wishing you love, laughter and magical kisses,

Arielle

Throw yourself a Pity Party

I want you to think of your 3 most prominent negative beliefs or stories about WHY you are not already with your soulmate.

Is it because someone has betrayed you and you have a belief that all Men (or women) lie or cheat or something like that?

Is one of your beliefs or stories that there is something wrong with you and that is the cause of your aloneness?

Or do you believe that you are too old or too fat or too broke or too damaged?

Lets take just a few minutes and think about your 3 most predominant beliefs or stories….then, if you are willing to finally overcome these stories, do this exercise.

Write down the entire story and make a strong argument for why it is absolutely your TRUTH.

Give every ugly detail and feel free to exaggerate it and make it even worse than you remember.

Read through this a few times and then burn the pages as you say this prayer:

Dear God, Goddess and All That Is,    

I am now willing to release this story about why I cannot have Big Love in my life.

I am now willing to forgive and let go of this completely.

In this moment I give thanks that my heart and mind are now being healed from these past beliefs, stories and wounds.

I am grateful for this healing and I am now open, willing and available to have deep love in my life.

And so it is.  

Then sit down and write a new story, in which your former beliefs existed to prepare you for Big Love.

For instance, I once had a boyfriend, Joe, who was extremely controlling, constantly lied to me, and cheated on me.

For years after the relationship ended I felt the pain of this experience….until I did the pity party process.

When I did this process my new story became this:

Because of my experience with the lying, cheating, controlling Joe, I have now learned that I deserve to be loved, cherished and adored by a man who is honest, trustworthy and faithful.

Being with Joe was an important piece of my personal growth so I can now forgive him, forgive myself and I am grateful for the experience.

I then wrote out how wonderful my next relationship would be, how satisfied and content and loved I felt in this new relationship.

Are you ready to let go of your old story?

Are you ready to write your new story….the story that will magnetize to you the love of your life?

This process is just one of the many things we will be doing in my upcoming Soulmate Secret 7 Week Online Course.

To discover more about this I will be hosting a free preview call on May 16th, register here.

Wishing you love, laughter and magical kisses,

Arielle

Givers, Takers and Emotional Vampires

Over the years I have observed that most people fall into one of three categories that I have named Givers, Takers, and Emotional Vampires. It’s pretty easy to figure out that Givers are heart -entered lovers who’s first consideration is the other person. They provide love, comfort, support, care, compassion and empathy. Givers make any room they walk into, and the world, a better place. Takers walk into most situations thinking, “what’s in this for me?” They are not necessarily bad people, they are just me-centric. Takers are also very capable of giving, it’s just not their starting place. (I confess that I fall into this category, my beloved Brian is a Giver to the max!)

There are a lot of takers who believe they are primarily givers….they want to see themselves as these great, compassionate folks but they operate out of unconscious needs and self interest hoping we won’t see what they are really up to. Generally their requests come with a super sweet tone of voice and they preface things by telling you how much they love you, care for you and “oh by the way can you do X,Y, Z for me?” And, some part of you ends of feeling slimed but you don’t know why.

And then, there are the emotional vampires. These folks are predatory, parasitic, and bad for your health. They want to feed off your energy by demanding your attention. They are quite often Drama Kings and Drama Queens and while it can be interesting or amusing to listen to their tales of woe (and maybe even have you feeling like your life is pretty good compared to theirs) this is a one-sided relationship and there are no goodies in it for you.

I am bringing this to your attention because it is now officially Spring and it’s a great time of year to clear out the clutter in your home and in your life.

Spend a little time looking to see if you are inadvertently feeding any emotional vampires and if you are, are you willing to banish them from your life???

And then, look and see who the Givers are in your life, and is there any thing special you would like to do for them to show your love, gratitude and appreciation?

And finally, look and see how you are showing up in your world? Where and with whom are you a Giver?

A Taker?

Maybe even an emotional vampire?

For me, I am committing to be more like Brian….I want to stretch myself and find new ways to be more of a Giver and less of a Taker. And for sure there are a few emotional vampires I plan to banish instantly!

Wishing you love, laughter and magical kisses,

Arielle

For Better or Worse

As most of you know by now, my darling sister Debbie died last week after a very long journey with cancer. Deb and I were as close as two sisters could possibly be. Our lives were deeply intertwined. When she became gravely ill this past month, I basically stopped my normal life to be with her. When it became clear that she was in her final days, my soulmate, Brian, became my rock, my hero, and my soft place to land. He did this not just for me, but my mother, as well as Debbie’s co-workers and caregivers Julie and Fran. Brian, who is so wise–not only on how to live but he also understands the dying process–spent much of his time preparing all of us for the inevitable. With patience and grace — and with so much love – Brian helped us cope, understand and adapt on so many levels.

And he was present for my sister Debbie in ways that her soul yearned for. They had many deep conversations about where she was, and where she was going. She loved and trusted Brian so much, and with his support, she was able to come to terms with dying. He helped her see that something beautiful awaited and gave her the peace to let go. It made the end of her life her so much more profound and beautiful because she had someone to guide her through.

He gave of himself tirelessly, with devotion, patience, empathy, and buckets full of unconditional love. Brian wrapped us all in a down comforter of love and hugs that made the unbearable bearable.

As every moment left with Debbie became more precious, the true meaning of life became so obvious–we are here to give love, to receive love and to truly BE love. I was reminded how truly important it is for us to love and honor ourselves, to love those around us, and to purposely manifest your soulmate. I know how blessed I feel to know that my soulmate is by my side.

Today, I want to leave you with one of my favorite quotes from A Course In Miracles:
“The only thing that can be lacking in any situation is that which you are not giving.”

Wishing you love, laughter and magical kisses,

Arielle

P.S. In lieu of flowers donations can be made to Debbie’s foundation www.thecollectiveheart.org for the Girl Power Project.  If you would like to share your memories and stories about Debbie, prayers for Debbie, or messages for her family, please visit www.RememberingDebbieFord.com

This Is The Way To Overcome Doubt

Lately, the question I am hearing most often is, “How do I overcome my doubt that I will ever find my soulmate?”

First I would ask you to determine: is this a random thought, a random doubt or do you have a serious “belief” that you will never find your soulmate?

It’s important to make this distinction. As human beings, it’s normal to have occasional doubts but, if your core belief is you won’t find your soulmate, this is something that you need to overcome.

When I have a doubt about something, I choose not to buy into. I say to myself “cancel-cancel” and then select a more empowering thought.

For instance, you have the doubt, “I’ll never find my soulmate.”

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