Life can be kind of crazy sometimes. The ebb and flow, peaks and valleys, dancing with Life, climbing mountains, falling, and sometimes just sitting still. It can be hard to know what all of it means, if it means anything at all. And it can be difficult to navigate how to make things better when they are feeling less than great. Still, hindsight being 20/20 there is so much more beauty and magic in life than there is pain or darkness. Is there a way to love both the light and dark parts of life, though? And if so, what does that even look like?
When you can understand why the specific things that are occurring in your life are occurring, you can find peace within the process. It is all in your understanding. Perhaps the only understanding that you will need is that everything happens for a reason, and that there is a lesson to be learned from this experience, negative or positive. Other times the understanding you will need will take a little bit more discovery and exploration for your own answers. This shift in perspective will help to soften the darker of experiences in life.
Once you can find a headspace and heartspace of peace, you can then move into the fun stuff. The part where loving every experience comes into play. It isn’t hard to love the beautiful bits of life, and it isn’t hard to sometimes be really grateful for them either. To intentionally hold a space of deep and consistent gratitude takes a little bit more effort. Once you achieve mastery of this practice though, your highs will feel so much higher, and that energy will manifest more positivity.
To do a little bit more intentional work, you can hold a deeply rooted knowing that the negative experiences of life hold just as much magic and light, because through the transformation those tough experiences will reward you with wisdom and trust in the process. If you let them, that is. You see, if you can hold a knowing and gratitude for the universal truth that is everything happens for a reason, and if you can ground into that you can begin to fall in love with even the roughest of chapters of your life.
It is not the easiest practice, but it is one that will gift you with feelings of safety, support, and purpose. You will no longer feel lost and broken in your periods of darkness, but rather you will feel inspired and empowered even when things are hard to sort out. You will find a feeling of peace and contentment with your growth process, and from that place you can bring your own light to whatever the negative situation may be.
While it isn’t fun to say, our darkest moments in life tend to be our most formative, no matter our age. So if you can find gratitude and knowing in the fact that you are exactly where you need to be so that you may reach your highest potential. You can find an underlying love for even the most uncomfortable and unwanted experiences. You can find a power in that space to bring forth light and wisdom that will make the journey a little bit more bearable. There you can embrace any experience that comes your way with a loving understanding, confidence and maybe even joy.
Meet Riley Reign, curator of The Spirit & Soul Blog
Today was a rough one in trying to find a blog topic, in fact, as I type this very blog is is 1:00 am. I went into my meditative space and asked what I could write today, and I was told to tell you more about my story & who I am. As much as I want to say, “Oh I don’t want to come off conceited here”, which I truly do not want to do, I must say I have never spoken about myself in this way very much in real life, let alone online, and so I am interested to see what happens with this guidance, and to see what comes of it. Because let’s be honest, the Work With Me page only scratches the surface (it was written too long ago), and many of you know very little of the (currently) 19 year old trying to change the world from a computer.
So… Hi, I am Riley Reign. Welcome to the Spirit & Soul community!
I am a (currently) 19 year old woman, working to change the world from my computer. I have a deep calling to inspire + empower as many people on this planet as I can in this lifetime, and for whatever reason that decided to manifest as this blog you’re reading on here. I have been raised in a very personal growth centered, spiritually and emotionally open home with an incredible family. I am the oldest of 7 children (all directly related, incase you were curious, because many people are), and while this is true to my life, it is a small piece of what I came here for.
My grandfather taught people how to walk on hot coals, my mother learned and did it when she was young. My family has been meditating and listening to Wayne Dyer for as long as I can remember. There has always been a part of me that has known I would walk the path I am on now in some way. I remember being about 7 or 8 watching a PBS recording of Wayne Dyer teaching and thinking to myself, “I could do that”, while also thinking, “This is dumb – what is he even talking about right now”. What a cute little 8 year old Ego. I remember writing short stories as a tween, very irrelevant ones, but I knew how to write with such ease. I have since learned what a gift that is.
At 16 my family moved states, and houses for the first time I would be able to really remember, and I felt like I was being stripped of everything I knew. What a cute teenage problem to have! In a physical way, you could say that was true. But what really happened over the course of the next few years turned out to be that I was instead coming home to everything I had wished for, consciously and subconsciously. I listened to the song ‘Awake My Soul’ from Mumford & Sons nearly every night, and little did I know that is what I manifested for myself (Thank you, Universe!).
I was given the space to re-learn who I was, and what I was truly made of. Skip through some concealed depression, feeling very stuck and angsty about it, and some soul searching and we cut to the day that I sat watching Oprah’s Super Soul Sunday when the thought that I had years ago resurfaced, “I could do that.”
“Maybe I should start a blog? I can teach about spirituality. Actually, I could really kick ass at this blogging thing.” And 2 days later I had a blog. This very blog you’re reading now. I took 2 months to ‘perfect’ the website and write some ‘content’ and I launched Spirit & Soul. This is the very beginning my friends. Now I have published over 200 blogs on this site and others, I have began mentoring (another coming home to my truth story for another time), and I am in the beginning stages of co-creating a KICK. ASS. 6 week course that will launch the beginning of 2018. I do not have a job, and haven’t since I was 16. While I don’t really make much blogging, I know this is where I am supposed to be, and nearly 2 years in I am just at the beginning of this wonderful crazy journey – that beginning of 2018 stuff is going to crack things open big time.
Here is what I have learned so far:
1) Follow the whispers.
I know now after following the next steps that have been put in front of me, that I am supposed to be right here doing this in the exact way that I am. As much as I have a big why – to shift the consciousness of the world into a better place – my little why is this: I am supposed to be doing this.
2) Trust in the most painful things you go through, because they are your deepest gems.
I thought moving away from my friends and what we were doing at the time was the worst possible thing to happen to me, and it has turned out to be the best. I have grown so much more. I am so much happier. I know how to do what I am good at so much better. I am becoming the woman I always knew I could be, and I am helping people along the way in a powerful way. The mess and the darkness is where we grow closer to our truest selves. Embrace that shadow, learn to feel safe in your cave, and learn when it is time for you to leave it, too.
3) We can never lose ourselves. We only lose sight of our own truths.
I know now from personal experiences and working with mentoring clients that this is 100% true. We can NEVER lose ourselves, we can never lose our connection to ourselves, our intuition, our higher self, or our connection to whatever higher power we believe in. We can only lose sight of it, and when we can’t see something, we doubt it to shreds. Choose to see yourself, your truth, and your higher power. Choose to live that out, and you will never be alone or unsupported along your journey.
I know that one day I will speak and write books, and I know I’m not quite there yet. Even if 200 blogs could be a book already. And all while writing about myself this much is a little weird, it is also important that my dear soul seeking, light seeking, truth seeking readers can get to know me in a more personal way. Just because I come across as wise and insightful does not make me any better than any of you. We all have our journeys to walk and experience and we are all here to serve and uplift and carry each other.
I don’t quite know why I am here to inspire + empower, or how I am supposed to shift and expand the consciousness of the world, but I am here and I am showing up for my journey and my work each day. I only look forward with excitement and wonder. I hope you’ve been able to get to know me a bit better, and have more understanding to why I am here and doing what I am doing (at the age that I am).
Each and every one of us has the potential to be of service, and to help assist healing in anyone we come into contact with in our day to day lives. Yet most of us don’t realize or believe this truth. I am here today to express this universal truth and share 3 ways this can be realized within our day to day lives.
It doesn’t take a superhuman, or an empath, or a ton of energy to be there for someone. My friends often call me a therapist, and I kind of am an unofficial therapist. That’s what friends are for! I understand that I am rather gifted in this realm, too. However, this is not something that only ‘some people’ with ‘certain gifts’ can do. Even if it does feel that way sometimes. I was inspired to write this piece when I was remembering a specific scene in Tony Robbins netflix documentary, I Am Not Your Guru (I highly highly reccomend this one by the way).
Tony is speaking about how he does what he does, and recalls a philosophy of his, “There is always a way.” There is always a way to find love and healing is what he is speaking of. There is always a path to whatever he needs to channel, it is just a matter of finding it. This brings us to the first of 3 ways ANYONE can be a healer.
There is always a way, it is just a matter of finding the path. And you cannot find the path if you are coming from a place of resistance. By choosing openness you literally create space for the answers, pathways, and insight to come through and light the way.
If you’re out for coffee or lunch with a friend, and they’re telling you this story of the drama or chaos in their life and you just don’t know how to help them, but you know there has to be some way to soften to situation you’re right. Choose openness and you will be amazed at what insight and solutions will come forward.
2- Listen :
Once you have opened up, guidance and wisdom will flood through, no doubt. This guidance and wisdom is of no help to you as a healer though if you do not listen to the answers. Once you open up, tune in. Listen closely to the whispers of insight and solution.
From there you can offer up options and there will be a dialogue of solution rather than dwelling. This shift in focus will begin to manifest the right solution and create healing within whomever you’re helping.
3- Be Supportive + Honoring
Something many people often don’t understand is that healer’s do not commonly do much of the healing part. A healers job is to create a safe space, one that is protected, filled with good energy, and is supportive. To inspire healing, growth, and positive shifts in others, you yourself must first be an example of these things.
Bringing a supportive and honoring energy to the space or moment is one of many ways to be that example. Even if you are merely holding a small conversation with a stranger on a bus you can be supportive of their presence and honoring of their feelings, stories, ways of finding clarity, etc.
There are many many more ways to be a healer, or have a healing presence. These 3 are the easiest, simplest, and most impactful ways to show up for anyone who you encounter throughout life. If you find these tips resonate with you or have worked in your own life, please share your thoughts and experiences below in the comments!
I hope these 3 practices help you to help heal the world around you.
If Mindfulness Is Your New Years Resolution: A Bulletproof Guide To Keeping Your Practice Strong
It’s resolution season! A personal favorite season of mine is the New Year’s season, and I am here to help this year if one of your goals/resolutions is to begin a Mindfulness practice. I’ve created a bulletproof reference guide for starting your practice with exploration and keeping your practice strong in the long run with a few powerful (and personal favorite) tools! With helpful knowledge packed books that aren’t overwhelming in the slightest, easy to use apps to explore what you want your practice to consist of and feel like, and a simple list of important principles to remember when testing the waters and beginning to grow your practice.
“Let’s be real for a sec. Most of us don’t have time for an hour of yoga or 30 minutes of meditation every day. We’re overwhelmed as it is. Our spiritual practice shouldn’t add to that.
That’s why I’ve handpicked 108 simple techniques to combat our most common problems—stress, burnout, frustration, jealousy, resentment. The stuff we have to deal with on a daily basis. This book is designed so that you can achieve peace and experience miracles now.
Inspired by some of the greatest spiritual teachings, these practical, moment-to-moment tools will help you eliminate blocks and live with more ease. They’re powerful, life-changing meditations and principles, modernized and broken down into easy-to-digest techniques to fit your lifestyle.
Throughout the book, I share principles from both A Course in Miracles and Kundalini yoga and meditation. These tools can help you find your connection to your inner strength. When you practice these techniques, fear will melt away, inspiration will spring up, and a sense of peace will set in.” Author Gabrielle Bernstein on what Miracles Now is for.
This is a personal favorite book of mine to use when I don’t know what to use. I flip to a page (usually get a good reality check of an ass kicking) and use the tool provided on the random page I turned to. This one is so filled with knowledge and powerful tools that work! I would recommend it to anyone looking to learn more about mindfulness as well as personal growth.
“Your bucket list. Quarterly objectives. Strategic plans. Big dreams. Goals. Lots of goals and plans to achieve those goals—no matter what. Except …
You’re not chasing the goal itself, you’re actually chasing the feeling that you hope achieving that goal will give you.
Which means we have the procedures of achievement upside down. We go after the stuff we want to have, get, or accomplish, and we hope that we’ll be fulfilled when we get there. It’s backwards. And it’s burning us out.
So what if you first got clear on how you actually wanted to feel in your life, and then created some “Goals with Soul”?”” -An excerpt from Amazon.com of what The Desire Map is about. I personally own this book as well. Who doesn’t want mindful and intentional goals? This one is perfect to accompany and amplify your New Year’s intentions.
“Dr Patrizia Collard is a psychotherapist, mindfulness teacher, stress management consultant and lecturer in psychotherapy at the University of East London. Her books include Journey into Mindfulness, Mindfulness-based Cognitive Behavioral Therapy for Dummies and Awakening the Compassionate Mind (2014).
Dr Collard’s wide range of approaches and methodologies includes mindfulness-based cognitive behavioral therapy, rational emotive behavior therapy, core energy management, existential therapy, drama therapy, yoga and meditation, relaxation, and self-hypnosis.” – From Amazon.com about the author. If you just don’t know where to start, and want to start small and explore what mindfulness consists of and what a mindfulness practice may look like for you. This book is the perfect taste of what mindfulness is.
Headspace is an incredibly simple meditation app that guides you through how to meditate, different modes of meditation, and how meditation affects the brain. Perfect for the beginner or the expert — and it’s FREE to start!
“Looking for a sign from the universe, a little oracle backup? Use the random pop up feature to see if a #Truthbomb has the answer you need. It’s all divine. Comes with a library of over 300 #Truthbombs, and you’ll get a new #Truthbomb every weekday on your phone. And, sharing is easy breezy. You can text, Pin and post t’bombs everywhere.” – About the app from daniellelaporte.com
I love this app. It gives the most divinely perfect timed truthbombs just when I need them and it keeps me aware of how I am feeling and being, and how I can be better at it all. This one is also free!
“Daily mindfulness moments to help you to pause, reflect, and refocus on the present moment. Beautiful imagery and personally curated content. Downloaded over 100k times with a lifetime 4.6 star rating. Helping people live more mindfully since 2010!” – Description of the app from apple.com
I’ve been playing around with this app for the last few months and I’ve got to say I am obsessed! It is impeccably simple and clean and beautifully orchestrated. I highly recommend turning on the notifications to get unexpected breaths of fresh air to pull you back into the present moment each day throughout the day. This app is also free!
Important Things To Know ~
It is a practice for a reason – It will not be perfect, and the only constant is change. Allow yourself space to play and learn and be open and flexible with your practice. What it is and what it becomes will always be changing to help you grow further.
Mindfulness can be different than you imagined or expected – And that is okay! Again, be open, be gentle with yourself, and just see where the ride takes you. It is beyond worth it along the journey as you keep working. Letting go of comparison to a friend or relative’s experiences and practices is super important too.
Your practice will grow and deepen gradually – Let it be natural. Do not force things, do not rush things. Your persistence will create the understanding and awareness you need to grow and deepen as you learn and refine your practices.
I wish you the most luck and success on your journey and I hope the information provided here today can carry you along your journey as smoothly as possible! Happy growing & learning! Namaste
New Years is undoubtedly my favorite time of the year and it breaks my heart to see so many lovely people fail themselves and their goals, so this year I invite you to begin your goals in a different way than before — with Intention. Intention is something I see lacking in our culture often. As a culture of nice things, materialism, and being mostly inauthentic I feel like these are the reasons we fail our own goals and resolutions. Our goals and resolutions often do not even resonate with us. They often don’t have clarity.
So I invite you to look at the resolutions you think you’ll be making this year, and look at why you are making them. Truly, deeply, why are you making these resolutions? What do they serve? Why do you want these things to realize into your life? And then ask yourself the kicker, do these things truly, deeply align with me and my feelings?
Some things may completely align for you, and some might not. This is where Intention comes into play. The things that align and feel right likely have clear and aligned intentions, while the other goals and resolutions will not. When one begins something with clear concise intentions, they are beginning with power.
When your focus is on intention more than it is on the outcome, there is deep clarity that stems from that focus. And when one can keep their focus on their intentions rather than a possible negativity that may be arising within a goal’s realizing, that persons focus on their intentions can consistently inspire them and motivate them by purpose, rather than the material thing itself.
Intention is such a simple perspective switch that can invoke so much power into a manifestation or realization of something. That little switch in perspective can make or break how smooth and sweet or rough and sweaty the journey is of creating and achieving something. Danielle Laporte’s book The Desire Map is a fabulous resource and tool for any who need help setting intentional and aligned goals/resolutions.