It’s alive!! Whatever you put your attention on comes alive

“Let’s live, baby. Let’s feel alive at all times. Make this moment your reckoning. Your head has been held under water for too long and now it is time to rise up and take your first true breath.”― Brian Krans

Kids’ computer games have undoubtedly evolved since my daughter Taz played them on the giant desktop (compared to today’s laptops, that early Gateway is a veritable behemoth) in my office.

But back then, she had several games where, by pointing a cursor at an item in a scene, it would came alive. For example, if she clicked on a cupboard door, it would open, music would play and a duet of dancing mice would pirouette across the shelf. Or she’d click on a flowerpot and it would shimmy and shake until its beautiful red petals rained to the ground.

Life is a little like those old computer games. When you put your attention on something, it literally comes alive. If you put your cursor on all the opportunities and love in the scenes of your life, that reality comes alive. But if you continue to click on the monsters under the bed, they, too, are more than happy to put in an appearance. The thing is we’re the ones manning the dials. We’re the ones deciding where to point our cursors, where to send our attention.

Here’s something that drew my attention last week. I loved it and thought it was a good start to a weekend that better include dancing.

Pam Grout is the author of 17 books including E-Squared: 9 Do-it-Yourself Energy Experiments that Prove Your Thoughts Create Your Reality and the soon-to-be-released sequel, E-Cubed, 9 More Experiments that Prove Mirth, Magic and Merriment is your Natural State.

Trust that the universe has your back: a guest post by Linda Ford

“Learning is slowed less by lack of intelligence than by a reluctance to let go of bankrupt ideas and exhausted ways of seeing.” –D. Patrick Miller

As you partygoers know, I’m all about community. And one of my most treasured communities is the tribe I’ve met through my books and here on this blog.

Today, I’m delighted to share a guest post from Linda Ford, master life coach and one of the many pals I’ve met here in cyberspace.

With no further adieu, here’s Linda:

Is Your Life about LOVE or FEAR?

When I first started dating my husband, I went through an uncomfortable phase of not really knowing whether he loved me as much as I loved him. I wanted so much to just relax in my love for him…to give in and let my affections be known. But I purposefully put the brakes on and held myself back out of fear that he didn’t care for me in the same way.

I’ve come to see that the act of falling in love is a perfect metaphor for the relationship we each have with that larger than life partner–the universe. The dynamics are exactly the same. And wouldn’t you know, there are just as many variations of how that relationship gets played out.

Some of us show up with high expectations knowing that the universe has the potential to be one great partner. We dive right in. We’re optimistic, unabashed, playful, trusting, and eager to do whatever it takes to keep our relationship vibrant. We take the risk because we know that the price of missing out on the possibility of joy would be too great a loss.

And then there are those of us who just never quite relax, let go, and trust that the universe really loves us and has our back. We hold the relationship at arm’s length…just in case something goes wrong…just in case it’s not as benevolent and honorable as we had hoped. We dilute our true feelings, we don’t ask for what we really want, and instead, play it safe. We put on our armor, because the fear of disappointment is too much to bear.

How would you describe your relationship with the universe?

You may think it odd to know that you have a relationship with the universe. But you do. In fact, it’s actually one of the most important relationships you’ll ever have. Think about it. You’re interacting with it at every single moment. You’re getting constant feedback about how you’re showing up. It never ignores or neglects you. And best of all…what the universe is capable of giving you in return for your love, supersedes any relationship you will ever have with a mere mortal.

It all sounds so wonderful in theory. The question is: do you really believe this relationship exists? And if so, are you showing up with an enthusiasm to really LOVE, or are you holding yourself back due to fear and doubt?

I know what it feels like to have an open and trusting relationship—I have one now with my husband. And so, I’ve noticed that my relationship with the universe doesn’t always match up to that high standard—in fact, it sometimes feels a little off.
How do I know this? I sometimes feel scared and suspicious that it’s going to bite back and disappoint me…make me feel sad…..use me…or worst of all…ignore me if I tell it what I really want. I get scared that if I raise my expectations…if I dream BIG….I may end up getting trampled on and dumped. And like any insecure lover, I end up feeling suspicious, fearful, manipulative, controlling, and joyless. A very unattractive partner.

Albert Einstein said that there is only one question worth asking; the answer to which determines your entire outlook on life and affects everything that you desire for yourself.

Do you believe the Universe is friendly or unfriendly?

I’ve personally spent too many years fearing the universe. And who wouldn’t? It’s BIG and POWERFUL. And there’s so much that could go wrong. But in all fairness, there is also so much that could go right….right? Which is why I’ve decided that I’d rather be in love than be in fear. I may not have always gotten everything I’ve wanted…and I’ve had my heart broken a few times…but, that’s just the way life goes. Ultimately, I’ve accepted that we’re here to have experiences.

Developing an intimate and loving relationship with someone requires that we get to know them and they get to know us. And in order to do that we have to risk getting close, being authentic, and taking a risk to be vulnerable. It’s no different with the universe. It wants to get close you…it wants to know you….love you…and give you want you want. It wants to see YOUR LOVE. But it will never happen if it can’t get near you.
What would it take for you to start telling the story that the universe is truly friendly? What stories would you have to let go in order to let down your guard…to trust…to show up in life with enthusiasm…to raise your expectations…to believe that the universe truly has your back?

Why not risk it, and see what happens.

Linda Ford is a Master certified coach and LOA expert. She teaches women how to break out of a lifestyle that’s blocking their success and the unleashing of their full potential. Linda has been personally trained by Dr. Martha Beck, NY Times best-selling author. Her website is: http://www.attractalife.com

“If it’s not fun, you’re not doing it right.” –Bob Basso

“I realize humor isn’t for everyone. Just for those who want to have fun, enjoy life and feel alive.”—Anne Wilson Schaef

My daughter is home for spring break which means I’ve got lattes to drink, movies to see, new restaurants to try. So just two quick questions to start the week:

1. Are you consciously creating your life or simply responding with worn-out, knee-jerk reactions?

2. What grander, more glorious version of yourself is wanting to emerge?

Have a great week!! And remember that the better you feel, the more fun you have, the more blessings and miracles “the Dude” will send splashing your way.

Pam Grout is the author of 17 books including E-Squared: 9 Do-it-Yourself Energy Experiments that Prove Your Thoughts Create Your Reality and the soon-to-be-released sequel, E-Cubed, 9 More Experiments that Prove Mirth, Magic and Merriment is your Natural State.

The 5 Top Perks of Brazen Gratitude


“Thank you is the best prayer anyone could ever say.”—Alice Walker

I just finished a story called “Training to Be Superman” for Men’s Journal. It includes six other-the-top endurance competitions for earning your cape. It was fun to write, sorta tongue-in-cheek, but it got me to thinking that of all the superpowers, gratitude is my superpower of choice. And it comes with all kinds of perks. Here are my top five:

1. Gratitude is like a seed. It starts small, but it grows whatever you’re noticing into a super-size reality. Lettuce seeds are tiny, but they grow into these big green, nourishing leaves. By noticing even one tiny thing you like about an unpleasant situation, you can grow it into a giant green leaf of love.

2. Gratitude improves family relationships. Being happy is contagious and quickly spreads to your inner circle.

3. Gratitude brings you back to ultimate reality. It’s pretty easy to veer off track, to think “life sucks and then you die.” But when you stop for a moment and write a list of things you’re grateful for, you suddenly remember. “Oh, yea! Life is truly sweet.” As Adyashanti reminds us, “Reality is life without our distorting stories, ideas, and beliefs.” And when we’re grateful, those stories, ideas and beliefs don’t stand a chance.

4. Gratitude makes you happy. It makes you want to dance which, for those hoping to lose weight, is a pretty good technique.

5. Gratitude is the perfect superpower for any weekend. And since today is T.G.I.F. (I also celebrate T.G.I.M, T.G.I.T., T.G.I.W.,T.G.I.TH, T.G.I.S. and T.G.I.SU.), keep in mind that gratitude is even more potent than a cocktail. Make this weekend the best one of your life.

Pam Grout is the author of 17 books including E-Squared: 9 Do-it-Yourself Energy Experiments that Prove Your Thoughts Create Your Reality and the soon-to-be-released sequel, E-Cubed, 9 More Experiments that Prove Mirth, Magic and Merriment is your Natural State.

“Evade every influence that keeps you frozen in the past. ” ― Rob Brezsny

“Our inner fire bursts into flame by an encounter with another human.”—Albert Schweitzer


In E-Cubed, the book I just turned in, the follow-up book to E-Squared, the book that comes out, I’m told, on September 16, I talk a lot about the importance of community.

As far as I’m concerned, there is no substitute for getting together with fellow compadres who are walking the path of enlightenment, who are interested in energy and miracles.

Neuroscientists have discovered that humans reverberate to the actions and emotions of people around them. This unspoken, but ongoing communication is why someone yawning can make you yawn even if you slept 10 hours the night before. It’s why bouncing around in Zumba with a group or applauding with a concert audience makes us feel so happy.

This resonance is why I’m part of two power posses here in my hometown. We get together weekly (one is twice a month) to talk about quantum physics, spirituality and the idea that consciousness creates the foundation of our lives. We encourage each other, celebrate with each other and challenge each other’s personal perceptions.

I walk out of those groups….no, I should say I dance out of those groups buzzing with joy and love and creative ideas. Which creates even more joy and love and makes me wonder. Why doesn’t everyone do this?

Just like the ability to run a four-minute mile was considered ridiculous nonsense until Roger Bannister finally did it on May 6, 1954 (and has been done many times since), it’s ridiculous nonsense to believers of old school conditioning that they have any say in creating miracles.

Which is why I love the positive outliers in my posses. When I hear stories from my friends who have “gone beyond” what was previously considered possible, I “get” for myself what’s possible for me. I’m suddenly able to run four-minute miles myself.

Annola Charity, who you may remember from this very blog, is a treasured member of both my power posses. You may not know her name now, but, mark my word, you will. This woman is a powerhouse. She’s an author, a beautiful seamstress, a singer—well, there’s not much she can’t do.

So, in honor of four-minute miles and power posses, I’d like to share two stories from my dear friend Annola.

The first, took place several years ago. She was visiting a small Kansas town with her boyfriend. She’s African-American, he’s white and the local yokels weren’t sure what to think of this unusual combination. They didn’t exactly tell them to leave, but they made it clear they weren’t happy with their presence.

Annola told her guy, “Don’t worry. I can fix this.”

So she got very clear in her mind, began focusing on love, on Truth, on the unshakeable fact that we all really love each other. And before long, the “haters” dropped away, the judgers disappeared and everyone in the little town became this biracial couple’s best friends.

The other story, also from Annola, is about the multi-dimensional reality of the quantum field. (Which, hint, hint is what my next blog post is about) In the Field of Infinite Potentiality (the F.P., as I like to call it), we exist in countless dimensions, but because we’re focused on this one material dimension, we miss a lot of blessings, miracles, signs and possibilities.

A few months ago, Annola sold one of her extra bread pans at a garage sale. It was longer than most and she had plenty so she decided to let it go. Last week, she was making a particular recipe and thought to herself, “Hmm, too bad. I sold that pan. It would work perfectly for this recipe.” She opened the cabinet and there, nested in the frying pan she uses on a near-daily basis, was the extra-long bread pan that she’d sold but needed to draw back into her life.

That’s how it works, folks. Or at least that’s a four-minute mile I choose to now run. In the comments section below, tell us about a “four-minute mile” that you’ve run and would like to encourage the rest of us is possible. Together, guys, we can turn this world around.

Pam Grout is the author of 17 books including E-Squared: 9 Do-it-Yourself Energy Experiments that Prove Your Thoughts Create Your Reality and the forthcoming E-Cubed: 9 More Energy Experiments that Prove Mirth, Merriment and Miracle-making is Your Natural State.

3 insanely easy tools for making your dreams come true

“Our ability to shape energy is like breathing. We do it all the time without even realizing it.”—Damien Echols

Singer/activist/poet Michael Franti has a tattoo on his arm that says, “Today I pray for_________.”

Every morning, he gets out a sharpie and writes in his highest intention. Some days, he hands the sharpie to his partner Sara. Or he allows one of his fans, somebody who is going through a hard time to write in a request.

Either way, it’s a powerful reminder that every morning we get to decide how our day will go, what we want it to mean, how we will use our thoughts, our beliefs and our prayers.

Tool #2:

This insanely easy tool comes from Thomas Edison who, you gotta admit, accomplished more than most in his life. He says he never went to sleep without first making a request to his subconscious. Again, super easy and very powerful. You’re going to sleep anyway, so why not ask for answers.

Tool #3:

Be a permanent holiday-maker. Yesterday, I mentioned the perks of walking with childlike wonder. To a three-year-old, the world is endlessly interesting. There’s no such thing as a bad anything. Without judgment or critique, the world is free to accommodate our sizzling imagination.

Pam Grout is the author of 16 books including E-Squared: 9 Do-it-Yourself Energy Experiments that Prove Your Thoughts Create Your Reality.

Why I’m the luckiest person on the Planet, Edition 11 @MELondonHotel

Glide through life as if all of creation is yearning to honor and entertain you.’–Rob Brezsny

Image

If you’ve ever taken a walk with a three-year-old (and if you haven’t, put it on your bucket list now), you know they notice and appreciate everything. 

Look, a ladybug! Look, a pebble! Look, I can kick it down the street.

 

That’s how I feel right now. Like a three-year-old, in complete awe and wonderment at all that’s happening to me. I just got to spend the weekend at the Hay House Ignite conference with Mastin Kipp, Gabby Bernstein, Jessica Ortner (and her totally cool friend, Sarah), a handsome young monk from Scotland named Sandy C. Newbigging and lots of other young gurus that Hay House (and Oprah) call the next generation of spiritual leaders.

 

I got to dance to Pharrell Williams “Happy” with a whole bunch of people in Hamburg and London. And I’m actually getting paid to do this. Is life freakin’ awesome or what?

 

And if that wasn’t enough, I was just served breakfast in bed (a latte and a fruit smoothie) at the London ME, a five-story hotel in London’s theatre district that has become THE place to be during London fashion week. From the rooftop suite, you can see all of London’s icons: Big Ben, Buckingham Palace, The Pickle, the Shard, the London Eye, to name a few.

 

The staff at ME London is so good-looking that recruiters for Ford and Marilyn modeling agencies should rush here posthaste.  Last night before seeing a live performance of “The Full Monty” I drank exotic cocktails at Radio, their rooftop bar that generates hour-long lines to get in.  And it is rumored that today, my little group of travel journalists might get a sneak preview of the Banksy exhibit that’s opening here in a couple weeks.

 

So life is sweet, my dear friends! And I am so grateful that, like a three-year-old, I am still pointing and saying, “Look!!”

  

Pam Grout is the author of 17 books including E-Squared and the and the soon-to-be-released sequel, E-Cubed.

In Good We Trust

“Man only likes to count his troubles, but he does not count his joys.”—Fyodor Dostoyevsky

I am happy to announce that, two days ago, I turned in the manuscript for E-Cubed. Can someone give me a loud and hearty “woot-woot!”

Tomorrow I’m heading to Hamburg for the first of a couple talks at Hay House Ignite conferences in Germany and London. If you’re anywhere near, please come by and say hello!! I’ll be joining Robert Holden, Mastin Kipp, Gabby Bernstein and Jessica Ortner in what is sure to be a rousing weekend that I guarantee will include dancing.

Next week, I’ll be back home and ready to resume blogging. So stay tuned and, in the meantime, here’s a quick post from the annals:

Before entering the hospital room of a tuberculosis patient, visitors are required to cover their entire bodies. They even don surgical gloves and face masks.
None of us balk at this seemingly overcautious behavior. We don’t want to catch tuberculosis. It’s contagious, for goodness sake. Of course, we’d go to great lengths to avoid being exposed.

Yet, we never protect ourselves from the bad news we see on television, the horrible reports we read in the newspaper. What we see on the nightly news is nothing like what we see in our own neighborhoods. The new media presents a grossly-distorted picture, an anomaly.

And, unfortunately, that picture of “America, the Ugly” is every bit as contagious and as damaging as those tuberculosis germs.

Poet and novelist Maya Angelou goes so far as to call negativity poison. She is vigilant in protecting herself from negative conversation. If she hears what she calls “a poisonous comment,” she quickly says “sayonara” and doesn’t feel a bit guilty about it. If anyone starts in at her home, she asks them to leave.

“If you allow it (negativity) to perch in your house, in your mind, in your life, it can take you over. So when rude or cruel things are said, I say, ‘Take it all out of my house.’ Those negative words climb into the wood and into the furniture and the next thing they’ll be on my skin,” she says.

She prefers what Paul said in his letter to the Corinthians. They wrote complaining about old men who were chasing young women, about church members who refused to tithe. And he wrote back, “If there be anything of good report, speak of these things.”

Your thoughts are magic. Not one of them goes unheeded by the universe. Whatever it is you think and feel the great universal energy stands up and says, “I second it.”

Why cast your spotlight in dirty corners? Why focus on negativity?

Our thought about ourselves, about our world, about our relationships create our reality. In a landmark physics experiment, researchers who theorized that light waves were curvy found curvy light waves. And those who deduced light waves were straight as Billy Graham? They found Billy Graham-straight light waves.

Who needs a mind reader or a psychologist to dredge up an unburied unconscious? If you want to know what there’s just take a look around. It’s all right there in living color. If you see dysfunctional relationships, finances that are always a struggle, a word of snotty sales clerks, then that’s what you’re spending your time thinking about. In fact, the thoughts come first.

Change your thought and your focus and you can literally change your world.

Pam Grout is the author of 16 books including E-Squared: 9 Do-it-Yourself Energy Experiments that Prove Your Thoughts Create Your Reality.

This CEO donates 100 percent of his profits to projects that address poverty

“I went broke and got fired before I found my calling.”
–Hal Taussig

Enjoy! One of my favorite posts from the past:

Hal Taussig will never make the Forbes list of highest paid CEO’s. It’s not that his Pennsylvania travel company isn’t profitable. Untours, the company he started in 1971 with a $5000 loan, pulls down annual profits of a million dollars, sending thousands of customers a year on shoestring cultural immersions to 24 destinations around the world.

It’s just that Hal donates every penny (yes, 100 percent) of the company’s profits to innovative projects that address poverty. He lives in a tiny two-room house with his wife Norma (she owns the century-old wood frame house that was built for mill workers), rides a bike to work (he gave his car away to a hitchhiker nearly 40 years ago), shops at thrift stores (his one suit cost $12 — “It’s a Brooks Brothers. I’m very proud of that suit,” Hal says) and refuses to take a salary. He has one pair of shoes that he resoles when they get worn and he reads newspapers and magazines at the library.

“I decided a long time ago I didn’t want to accumulate wealth,” Taussig says. “Things do not make people happy.  Living simply is how I get joy out of life. I live a very rich life on very little money.”

In 1999, when John F. Kennedy, Jr. and Paul Newman awarded Taussig with a “Most Generous Business in America” award, he went to New York to accept it, but rather than staying in a hotel, he stayed in a $10-a-night youth hostel.

“I don’t feel right about staying in a five-star hotel when there are people who don’t even have a roof over their head,” he says.

As for the $250,000 award, he used the entire amount to help home health-care workers start their own business. His wife Norma had just had a stroke.

“The woman who was taking care of her was only making $8 an hour while the agency was making $18,” Taussig says.

“We give loans and provide a hand up, not a handout,” Taussig says. “I’m trying to make the poor into capitalists, to help them become self-sustaining, to give them a way to make a living.”

Since 1992, when he started the Untours Foundation, he has provided more than $6 million, in loans to support such ventures as NativeEnergy, which sells “green tags” to fund wind, solar, and methane power; strawbale housing on the Rosebud Sioux Reservation and Bionatur, an heirloom seed company born out of the efforts of the Landless Workers Movement.

“We look for really innovative things that have the potential to change the world,” says Elizabeth Killough, who works for Hal at the Foundation.  “Hal is off the charts. I tell him I should pay HIM for the opportunity to work here. I used to be his consultant and when he asked me to work for him, I hesitated. Everybody needs heroes and I didn’t want to find out there was a dark side. But I’ve been here seven years now and he’s the real deal.

“Five years ago, he came to me and said, ‘Let’s make Media (Pennsylvannia where they’re headquartered) the first Fair Trade town in America. I laughed and couldn’t imagine what that would look like. I googled it just to humor him. And sure enough, there were fair trade towns in Europe. And we managed to get Media as the first Fair Trade Town in the U.S.or as they say in Europe, the first Fair Trade Town in the Americas.”

“He really walks the talk,” says his daughter, Marilee Taussig, who left corporate America to work for her dad’s company.  “It’s an admirable way to live your life, but sometimes it’s hard to be a family member of someone who is such an idealist, someone who doesn’t believe in a safety net.

“I call myself the unheiress. If my dad had decided to leave me a million dollars, would I have turned it down? Absolutely not. But what he left me is something much richer and that is the ability to live what you believe in and put your money where your mouth is. It’s all well and good to talk about living simply, but it’s a whole other thing to live it.”

“Money is the least important thing a parent can give a child. My dad gave me integrity, a sense of humor and a sense of purpose,” Marilee says.

Marilee says the company itself is a real reflection of her dad’s beliefs. “It’s a nontouristy way of traveling.” He believes foreign travel means more if the traveler can live like the locals.

Taussig contends “Americans don’t really want to be herded about like sheep or cattle.”

His loyal customers, many who return year after year, agree.

“We’ve been on escorted bus tours, cruises, the kind of thing where they take you to a hotel, tell you to put your bags out by 6 and be at the bus by 7:01. But Untours are completely different,” says Jerry Nolan, a retired doctor from North Carolina. “There’s nothing quite so informative and educational as traveling with Untours. You become kissing cousins with the locals.”

As a boy, Taussig lived in a log house on a cattle ranch in Colorado. His mother made his underwear from flour sacks. After getting a college degree, he tried to get into the cattle business, but invested all his money in a bull that was sterile.

“I went broke and got fired before I found my calling,” Taussig says.

Taussig taught history at a high school for 10 years before taking a yearlong sabbatical throughout Europe. He and Norma and Marilee rented apartments, shopped in village markets and traveled by foot, bicycle, train, bus and boat.

“That was an educationally important year for me. It got me in deep touch with other cultures,” Taussig says. He wrote a book called <em>Shoestring Sabbaticals</em> and came up with the idea for Untours: a travel agency that enabled tourists to get to know a place intimately.

What does he think about AIG CEO’s making $17 million, Merrill Lynch brokers bringing in $32 million?

“I’m glad these issues are now being discussed. Piling up money doesn’t bring happiness. Having a huge bank account doesn’t produce a profound contentment in life,” Taussig says. “Wealth gets in the way of human kindness, joy and peace.”

To find out more about traveling with Untours, click here.

Pam Grout is the author of 16 books including E-Squared: 9 Do-it-Yourself Energy Experiments that Prove Your Thoughts Create Your Reality.

“Clap along if you feel like happiness is the truth.” –Pharrell Williams

“We all long for love. Everything else is just killing time.”
–Kenny Loggins

Most people hear the word “love” and immediately think of long white dresses, tuxes and diamond rings. Our tendency to associate love with romance is a gaping blind spot. Not only are there millions of people to love (forget your quest to zero in on Mr. or Ms. Right), but there are million of ideas, millions of causes, million of quests to fall in love with.

The point is, there are lots of ways to make people happy, lots of ways to love. Don’t sit around waiting for your soul mate. Be crazy with love. Love when it makes no sense. Love in all it bewildering ways, shapes and styles.

Have the best Valentine’s Day of your life!!

Pam Grout is the author of 16 books including E-Squared: 9 Do-it-Yourself Energy Experiments that Prove Your Thoughts Create Your Reality.