Monday, December 31, 2012

Does this exain orbs? telepahty/channeling?

This has lots of good ideas, though it's a bit short on substance.

Friday, December 28, 2012

Self-awareness through poop!

(No, I'm not examining my own feces for a health exam.)

What do you think when you see dog poop on the sidewalk?

I used to think, "Eewww, gross!" I mean, afer all, dog poop is feces -- smelly, dirty feces.

Or maybe I'd think indignantly, "What an inconsiderate dog owner, not to clean up after his (or her) dog!"

But the other day, when I was out for my daily walk, and came upon dog poop on the sidewalk, I thought, "Aaawwww, a living, breathing dog left that. It's so great that we have four-footed companions!" I didn't try to think this, it's just what came up.

So I know something in me has shifted.

How do you know when something has shifted? What has shifted for you recently?

Tuesday, December 11, 2012


Here in northern California, wild turkeys roam suburban neighborhoods. I love seeing them, as they are about the largest wild birds with whom I interact. (Every now and then, a pelican will let me swim close by in the ocean, and they're large, too, but much less used to humans than the turkeys, so they stay farther away.) Unless you are very quiet and still, the males will raise their tail feathers, in what I suppose is a warning, and the whole group will move away from you.

I've been under the weather lately, with something a friend calls the 'mutational flu'. It's also called the ascension flu. Yes, i have lots of symptoms (see the list at the link), but the results are amazing. When I walk in the morning, the plants look different; they sort of sparkle. I've felt the energy of trees and large bushes in my aura for a few years, and now I can even feel grass, and leaves that have fallen. Being able to sense the energy of something so small is really different, and gives a whole new dimension to my walks.

This morning, on my morning walk, I met came across two turkeys in a place where it was very quiet and no other humans were around. As is my habit, I got into rapport with one of them, matching her movements as best I could. Fairly shortly, she relaxed and began to groom her plumage, as did the other turkey. We stayed for a while, I got this photo and moved on.

A few minutes later, I was back on the main road. A young guy approached from the other direction, as we crossed a culvert. A flock of turkeys was below us, near the stream that goes through the culvert. The guy was yelling at them, good naturedly, "Hey, you turkeys!" in the way that people call each other turkeys when they mean 'you jerk', or 'you idiot'. He looked at me as we passed, and said, "You know that they can hear you from here, don't you?" Well, yes, I do know that.

In the past, I might have thought of this dude as a turkey! But because of my own internal shift, instead, I see a sincere, if misguided, attempt to communicate with another species. The dude just needs a bit of the energy that has been infusing me! :)

Tuesday, November 27, 2012

Who Can You Trust?

Last weekend, I was out hiking with a friend, who kept telling me what was going on with her, at a very deep level, and then saying things like, "It's great to be able to share this with someone; I don't have anyone else to tell this stuff to."

It occurred to me that her major issue was not all the things she was talking about, but rather, trust. (There are some very good reasons for this, which I won't go into.) She's not alone, though -- trust is a big issue for a lot of people. So since then, I've been thinking about how you find out if you can trust someone at a deep level. (I'm not talking about more superficial issues, like showing up on time, or paying what they owe you. I've dealt with those issues here.)

It takes time to know if you can trust someone with your most sensitive experiences and feelings.  Listen carefully over a period of time to anyone you are getting to know, before sharing anything sensitive. Does this person
  • Complain a lot? If he complains all the time about just about everything, eventually, he'll complain about you, quite possibly spilling some of your 'secrets'. (On an energy level, there are no secrets. The energy spent trying to keep a secret weakens you, and takes energy from more positive pursuits. So transparency is your best protection in any case.)
  • Make many judgmental statements? If you hear judgments falling like drops from a leaky faucet, you must assume that she's judging you just as harshly as everyone and everything else, whether or not she says these judgements to your face. Do you really want someone judging you harshly? Do you even want to be around someone like that? Do you really want someone else's limitations circumscribing your life?
  • Ridicule people often? The ridicule can be in the form of put downs, or nasty, sarcastic humor (think Don Rickles here), or 'teasing'. An habitual ridiculer will use whatever you have shared to ridicule you, sometimes to your face. This is what really hurts, because what hurts you most  emotionally are judgements on things you already feel bad about.
  • Gossip? If she gossips, she'll feel free to tell your 'secrets', and leave you open to others' judgements and ridicule. Who needs that?
As you begin listening for complaints, judgements, ridicule and gossip, you'll find you rule out a great many people before settling on the few who don't do these things, or at least not as habits.

In the meantime, keep your own counsel. Journals are great for this, as long as they are not online, and preferably not even on a computer, which can be hacked. There are specific ways to keep journals which will help you clear your own issues, so that you don't actually need someone else to talk to most of the time. Maybe we'll get to that in another post...

Saturday, November 10, 2012

Tell Your Truth

According to the New York Times

"Christian conservatives, for more than two decades a pivotal force in American politics, are grappling with Election Day results that repudiated their influence and suggested that the cultural tide — especially on gay issues — has shifted against them.

"They are reeling not only from the loss of the presidency, but from what many of them see as a rejection of their agenda. They lost fights against same-sex marriage in all four states where it was on the ballot..." 

Why do you suppose that is? I think it's because by now, almost everyone in the US knows someone who is openly gay, and knows that this person is a 'normal' person in all respects, whose only difference is that he or she is attracted to members of the same sex, instead of the other sex.

Why do you suppose everyone now knows someone who is gay?  

It's because a generation ago, gay men began to organize because of AIDS, began to speak out, began a 'gay pride' movement. When all those gay men, and eventually lesbians, began to come out of the closet, eventually, almost everyone realized they knew someone who was homosexual. And each person realized that his friend, cousin, colleague, brother, sister, son, daughter, niece, nephew, uncle or aunt who came out of the closet was still the person he or she had always been. That made homosexuality, well, normal.

Why would you want your friends and relatives to have fewer rights than you do? You wouldn't.

This is the power of telling your truth. When you stand up and tell your truth, it empowers someone else to do the same. Eventually, like tiny streams come together to make a river that changes a landscape, all of you come together to change the consciousness of a country (and eventually the world). 

It's not just true for homosexuality, either. It's true for those who are fighting to legalize marijuana (and by the way, 24 years ago, an FBI agent told me that "if we had to exclude anyone who'd ever smoked marijuana from government, we wouldn't have a government"). It's true for people like me who openly talked about psychic abilities before it was popular. It's true today for people who are talking about having positive contact with extra-terrestrial beings. It's true for the insiders who are leaking political, financial, military and scientific truths, which the 'powers that were' are trying to hide from We the People.

So whatever your truth is, say it loudly - and proudly (as long as it doesn't hurt anyone else -- I am not standing up for child molesters, etc. here). 

Thursday, November 08, 2012

Saturday, November 03, 2012

A sense of place

When Hurricane Katrina hit New Orleans, I was horrified that an American city had been allowed to drown, disgusted that our government didn't give a damn about the hundreds of thousands in the city itself, and the millions in the area. When the tsunami hit Indonesia, I was horrified by the loss of life. When the earthquake hit Haiti, I was saddened for what happened to all the people there. When the tsunami hit Fukushima, I was worried for my friends there (who got out okay), horrified by what I saw, scared about how it would affect the entire world (still am, actually).

But when Sandy hit the Jersey Shore, it was a completely different experience.

Before I get to that, though, let me say that everyone I know -- and that's a lot of people, because I grew up there, because I went to college in NJ, because I lived in Manhattan for a couple of years -- is okay.  (I know this thanks to the magic of Facebook.) Many are inconvenienced by lack of electricity and in some cases, gas, but they're coping. Two friends, a couple who live in Highlands by the ferry terminal, had to evacuate. Their house is still standing, but it's gutted. Other than that, it's a tree down here and there. Yes, it's sad; yes, it's difficult in the short run, but for everyone I know, except my Highlands friends, there's no real life-changing damage.

The thing is -- Sandy hit me in the gut. And it's kind of in my consciousness all the time.

I grew up at the Jersey Shore, 5 miles from the beach. I was at the beach every day of every summer, often all day, every day, all summer. I learned to swim there, learned to ride waves there, felt one with the entire universe in the ocean there for the very first time. I learned to go to the beach to clear my head, even in winter.

I learned gymnastics from friends on the hard-packed sand at low tide. I learned life-saving there, and worked briefly as a life guard (the pool, not the ocean, but still).

I went to beach dances there. I heard Springsteen before he got famous, when his band, the 'hot' band, was the Steel Mill.  The Asbury Park boardwalk was my idea of fun -- roller coasters, the Tilt-a-Whirl, and the Fun House, not to mention cotton candy and candy apples.

Mostly I hung out in Sea Bright and West Long Branch, but every summer, one of my grandmothers would rent a studio in Asbury Park or Bradley Beach or Belmar or Deal. I'd go stay with her for a week, then I'd go home and my sister would stay with her for a week.  It was always so much fun. It meant I got to know more beaches in more towns.

I remember when the Long Branch pier burned down. I had one very memorable date at Seaside, where we walked the beach after the boardwalk closed, talking till 2AM. (Yeah, Dad was angry, even though I had no curfew.) When I was in college, a friend and I rented a house on Long Beach Island for a week off-season, when we could afford it. And I remember meeting a Long Branch firefighter in Wildwood, who told me they'd been instructed not to put out the Long Branch pier fire.

Reading that the many of the train bridges are out upsets me terribly (one of them goes through the Raritan Bay marsh, and it's amazing). Seeing photos of the destroyed Seaside rollercoaster saddens me. Seeing photos of Asbury Park, and Sea Bright and Highlands under layers of sand, the water having retreated, churns my gut. The photo of the missing wall of the Asbury Park Convention Center horrifies me.

None of my close friends in northern California is having the gut wrenching experience I am. But then, none of them grew up there, either.

Here's what I've learned: places really do become part of you. I don't know if it's just the memories, or something deeper. We exchange molecules with the air around us with every breath, and we use what we take in to build our bones and muscles and organs and skin. But every single atom in us supposedly changes every 7 years. So how is it that these places are so much a part of me?

I know now that what they say is true -- you can take the girl out of New Jersey, but you can't take New Jersey out of the girl.

Tuesday, October 23, 2012

Does this really need to be said?

This is going to sound like a shaggy dog story, but ber with me - there is a point.

A friend of mine, Heather,  told me the following story:

"I'm a small time landlord, and recently rented one of my apartments to a single mom, a nice lady with two young girls. The woman was getting out of what sounded like an abusive marriage, and in a real hurry to sign a lease before she left the country briefly to care for her ailing grandmother. She was REALLY not looking forward to this -- she grew up here, didn't know her grandmother all that well, and hates being in Fiji, her grandmother's country.  She was the best family member to go, though, because she makes her living caring for the elderly.

"She signed a 1 year lease, gave me a deposit, and we made plans for her to move in just after the first of the month. This would give me a couple of days to clean up the place in case the last tenant didn't do a great job.

"Four days before she was supposed to move in, she called from Fiji, and reached me on my cell phone. The number was blocked. I was in the car on the way to a MeetUp, but my friend, Jack, was driving, so I took the call. My tenant said, "My grandmother died, and I'm stuck here healing with cultural issues." Wow! I was shocked, and said I was sorry. Then she said, "I don't know if I'll be back in 2 weeks or 2 months. Can I get out of the lease? What do I do?"

"I told her calmly, but firmly, that she had signed a lease, and I was not about to let her out of it. That she was responsible for the $10,000 amount of the lease. That the law is that I'm required to make reasonable efforts to find another tenant, but that she is responsible for any deficiency. That is, if it's vacant for a month, she owes me a month's rent. And that I'll take her to small claims court to collect whatever she owes me, as soon as I know the amount of my damages."

"She said she understood, and would call me back in a few days to let me know if she could borrow enough money from a family member to keep the lease. I said I understood, and would look forward to her next call. Of course, she never called back.

"That was bad enough. Then I heard through a mutual friend that Jack was telling people that I dealt with this all wrong. That I should have just expressed my condolences and put off a serious discussion for another time. Never mind that he didn't know the situation, that he didn't hear her side of the conversation, that he didn't know the phone number was blocked, so I had no way to reach her, that he's never been a landlord, that he didn't know the law, and that I really need the money.

"So now, I'm not only out a tenant, but my reputation is being ruined by an ignorant jerk, who apparently knows better than I do what to do in my situation -- and is happy to tell anyone who will listen. And who is so cowardly as to not tell me this to my face. By the way, I tried to approach him to talk about it, but he has excuse after excuse as to why he 'can't' get together. What can I do?"

If he won't meet with you, there's not a lot you can do, except to realize that there are ignorant, cowardly jerks everywhere, and to let it roll off your back. You did the best you could. As my grandmother would have said, "Don't dignify that with an answer." Focus your attention on more positive things -- and let this go.

I think the lesson here is more about not being in Jack's position. How do you avoid that? In the words of Craig Ferguson (yes, the guy from the Late Late Show -- he's a very perceptive guy, not just a funny one), ask yourself these three questions:
  1. Does this need to be said?
  2. Does this need to be said by me?
  3. Does this need to be said by me now?
And if the answer to any of those questions is "no",  keep your mouth shut.

Monday, October 15, 2012

How to keep showing up!

In the fall of my second year in business school, my friend, Candy, who'd just completed a summer job and been offered a full time post by that company for after graduation, had to go to a company recruiting cocktail party on top of studying for mid-term exams. Trying to put myself in her shoes, I sympathized with her time crunch, as well as the stress I thought this would bring (or it would have brought for me).

Candy looked at me with a wry smile, and laughed softly, "Oh, no, this isn't stressful! All I have to do is show up. I'm good at showing up!" She continued, "I'll get brownie points for showing up. That's  really all I have to do --  show up and say 'hi' to a few people I know, so that they know I'm there, as part of the team. I don't have to impress anyone -- they've already offered me the job. I don't even have to talk to the recruiters much; they're more interested in prospects they don't know."

This idea that sometimes, all you have to do is show up, stuck with me. Or as Woody Allen said, "Eighty percent of success is showing up."

I'm reminded to mention this now, because I personally have a lot to show up for at the moment. In fact, it seems never ending -- the weekly radio show, the clients, my other businesses which seem to constantly need something, let alone friends and family. (Did I mention taking the barest of acquaintances in for surgery last week because he had no one else?)

I'm actually really good at showing up. I know not everyone is, though, and I think that's mostly caused by lack of motivation. So how do you maintain your motivation?
  • Keep reminding yourself of the big picture -- when you see how a tiny action can really help with the big goals of your life, you'll keep on showing up for the little stuff. 
  • Remember that "A journey of a thousand miles begins with a single step", as Lao-Tzu said. Yes, you have to take a lot of those single steps, but only one is the first one, and the 'showing up' ones are pretty easy.
  • Ask yourself, "How much effort is this really? How can I systematize this so that I can do it with almost no effort?" For example, if you're a coffee drinker, you have surely devised a system to make coffee so efficiently that you barely notice making it any more. You can do that with many things in life.
  • Try to find the fun -- or something positive -- in showing up.
Last week, I had a computer nightmare (believe me, you don't want to know the details!). Showing up to deal with it sucked. But the big picture is that I need that computer to run my businesses, and to do the radio show. The first step was to try to do the updates I needed by myself, using all the online help available in forums. When that wasn't enough, I called Apple for help. When that wasn't enough, the online help desk made me an appointment at the local Apple Store for help. When they couldn't solve my problem, they sent me to an outside company who is one of Apple's premium service sites.

There, I met the owner, who is not only the most competent Mac person I've ever met (he almost solved my problem completely, and told me how to do the rest myself), but also turned out to be interested in a lot of things I'm interested in that have nothing to do with computers -- star visitors, the unfairness of our current economic system, angels, the effects of vibrations, etc. We had a fascinating conversation that went on long past the completion of my computer issues. Meeting this man turned out to be the 'something positive' in showing up.

Monday, October 01, 2012

Is it psychic? Or just experience?

Intuition/psychic ability and experience form a spectrum of knowledge, and it's not always possible to tell where one begins and the other ends. Here's what I mean:

There's an old story about a factory owner, whose very complicated, very expensive piece of machinery stopped working. This machine was essential to his manufacturing, so he couldn't let it stay idle for long. So he called a crusty, old repairman,  who arrived with his ancient tool kit. He looked at the machine for a few minutes, opened his kit, took out a wrench, and tapped a pipe 3 times. Then he presented the factory owner with a bill for $1000.

The factory owner was furious. He said to the repairman, "You've only been here 5 minutes. All you did is tap 3 times on a pipe. How can that cost $1000? I want an itemized bill."

The repairman wrote out a new bill, which looked like this:
  • Tapping on pipe                       $  15
  • Knowing where to tap              $985
 The joke obviously revolves around the value of experience.

At the extreme other end of the spectrum, there is knowledge that can only be gained psychically. For example, 25 years ago, when I was first starting to do psychic readings, I volunteered to do readings for a small women's group, to whom I'd been referred by a mutual acquaintance. I eventually became friends with a couple of the women. Last year, one of them told me that she knew right away that I was for real because I told her something she'd done that she had done by herself, and never told anyone. So clearly that was psychic info.

Sometimes it's not so clear. Last November, another acquaintance approached me about joining a network marketing group he had joined, saying that in 5 months, he was already making a ton of money on his tiny investment. The company was Zeek Rewards, in which he bought penny auction bids and gave them away via an automated process arranged by the company. He said he was making "1.4% average a day or 42% a month and it compounds" in just a few minutes a day. This man has proven himself trustworthy over the years, so I believed him.

But I'm not into network marketing (some of the products don't work, all are overpriced, and even if the products work, the commission set up has to be good enough to make money.) I have never made money on any network marketing. It's fine for other people, just not for me. I ignored his email.

I ran into him in early July, and he extolled the virtues of this particular network marketing company, telling me I was missing out on a good thing, taht he was still making money, exactly as he'd told me. Something in me said, "Ponzi scheme". Not only did I not go for it, I told him to take his money out ASAP, before he couldn't get it out at all. Honestly, I can't tell you if it was a feeling (clairsentience) or a voice in my head (clairaudience or telepathy).

Here's the funny thing: I was right.

So was it psychic knowledge? Or was it just that I've been around businesses for a long time, and I know a scam when I hear one? I honestly don't know -- and that's the point. Experience and psychic knowledge go hand in hand -- and maybe that combination is what people call 'intuition'.

Monday, September 24, 2012

Whose Life Have YOU Changed Today?

My 21 year old stepson just came home from a 350 person wedding, where the groom was one of his cousins on his mother's side. At the wedding, he met a second cousin, whom I'll call Jack, who lives in Atlanta.

Jack talked at length about my husband, whom he had met at just a few family parties 25 years ago, when Jack was about 10. He remembered my husband very clearly, both the fact that he was a vegetarian (not nearly as popular in the US back then as it is today) and the fact that he was a computer programmer. Jack says this made a deep and lasting impression: he is a vegetarian and works in IT, and says it is due to his meeting my husband.

These were by no means memorable encounters from my husband's point of view. He was just being who he was. So my husband, just by being who he was, deeply affected Jack's life.

Here's another example:

A couple of weeks ago (9/12/12), my guest on "Your Life, Your Relationships" was Fred Burks, a former translator for US Presidents,  whose work is now creating personal and planetary transformation. See this and this. When I asked him what opened his eyes and changed his life, it was the Disclosure Project video of Dr. Stephen Greer. (Btw, this video shifted my perspective on life and the world, as well.)

Dr. Greer's intention is to change the world -- and he is doing it through video, among other things. So maybe a video you make (or a radio show I do?) will change someone's life radically.

That's the point. You never know whom you'll affect, or when, or by doing what. My husband found out about this one person whose life he changed -- but what about all those people he's affected that he will never find out about? What about Fred? What about Dr. Greer? They surely will not know about all the change they've fostered, either.

What about all the people you have affected, whom you'll never know you affected? Whose life might you change today, by some simple action -- or non-action?

This is a great reminder to each of us to be our best self in any moment, in order to change people's lives for the better. Because you just never know...

Maybe being who you are gives someone permission to be who they are. Or sharing some bit of information turns out to be life changing.
Maybe giving someone directions helps her get to a job interview on time, so she gets a job that she keeps for years and opens up new possibilities in her life. Of course, you'll never know that.

Tuesday, September 18, 2012

Why Should YOU Be Transparent?

Mitt Romney's recent statements at a private fundraiser, caught on video, show that what he says publicly is different from what he says privately. And then there's the refusal to release more than 2 years of his tax returns. This is referred to as a lack of transparency (perhaps because people don't want to use the word "lying"?).

That got me to thinking -- why wouldn't you be transparent? Whether you're a candidate for President, or any human being going through life, you have a choice of whether or not to tell the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth -- or not. As my Dad used to say, "Tell the truth -- there's less to remember." So really, why wouldn't you be transparent?

I can only come up with 2 reasons:
  1. You are deeply ashamed of the truth, or guilty about the truth, or 
  2. Telling the truth won't get you what you want. 
Let's take each of those in turn:

If you're feeling ashamed or guilty, you have a few options. First, look at what you're ashamed of, or guilty about, and ask yourself if it was your responsibility. For example, victims of sexual abuse often feel ashamed of that. But if you were not the abuser, you have nothing to be ashamed of.

On the other hand, if you were, in fact, responsible for whatever you're ashamed of or guilty about, then find a way to put it right. This is why Steps 8 & 9 of Alcoholics Anonymous' 12 Steps are
  • "Made a list of all persons we had harmed, and became willing to make amends to them all."
  • "Made direct amends to such people wherever possible, except when to do so would injure them or others."
Nobody ever said this would be easy.

Now what if you didn't do anything illegal but telling the truth about it wouldn't get you what you want? 

Mitt Romney is the perfect example. Let's assume he's done nothing illegal (I'm assuming this because no one has ever asserted anything to the contrary). But telling the truth, which goes something like, "I made hundreds of millions of dollars by sending US jobs overseas and then not paying taxes on the money I made", is not likely to get him what he wants, which is to be President of the United States of America, as it is deeply at odds with American values. If you were Mitt, what would you do? Obfuscate, of course. Change the subject. Refuse to answer the question, and blame it on the questioner, or the audience, who just wouldn't understand ("We've given you people enough information.") That is, be opaque, not transparent. A refusal to be transparent suggests that you know what you have done is morally wrong, if still within the letter of the law.

And this is why people don't trust those who are clearly hiding something, who are not transparent. 

Tuesday, September 11, 2012

What's the Difference between Love and Attachment?

I'm out of town, taking care of some business as I write this, as I have been for the last week or so. My husband is at home, holding down the fort. But one of the members of our household, Beast, the cat, went missing last week for a couple of days. 

Beastie is 17, and has been with me since he was 3 or so (we don't know exactly, as I got him at a shelter, where someone took him when his first humans moved away). When I met him, on vacation, I'd had no intention of coming home with a second cat. But when I picked him up, he melted into me, and that was it. He was my cat; I was his human.

For some great Beastie stories, see this, this, and this. Suffice it to say that I love this cat with all my heart.

He is in somewhat ill health with the beginnings of kidney failure, which I manage with supplements I mix into his food each day, and by giving him subcutaneous hydration once or twice a week. (Yes, I give him injections of Ringer's solution with a HUGE needle. It takes 2 humans to do it, and is no fun for any of the three of us.) This Kidney disease is eventually fatal, so he is on his way out, if somewhat slowly. It has caused the 'always hungry' kitty to lose a lot of weight.

So when he went missing, Kosta, my husband, and I both sent telepathic messages to Beast to COME HOME NOW! Usually, Beastie will show up at our back door within a couple of hours of one of these messages from Kosta, but this time -- nothing.

I thought maybe he'd gone off to die in the woods behind our house. And I'm not home to even say goodbye. That was incredibly hard on me.

But that got me to thinking: what is the difference between love and attachment? Because if I only love him, then I want the best for him, and if that is going off in the woods to die (which is normal for a cat), then that should make me happy. But it didn't. It just made me sad.

I realize that the love is a feeling of warmth in my heart. What was making me sad was the (presumed) loss of the joy of connecting with a physical Beast -- petting his fur, hearing him purr and meow, watching him jump into someone's lap, feeling my heart energy returned by him. That's the attachment part. That's about me, not him.

Think about this in your own life: How much of what you call love for someone or something is actually just your own attachment, your concern for yourself in relationship to that person or thing?

PS - Beastie did show up eventually -- having gained weight! So he has conned some other family into feeding him. Which would be okay if he didn't need his meds. So in the short term I'm relieved, while concerned about the longer term. What if it's best for him to enjoy his food and leave the earth plane sooner rather than later?

Monday, August 27, 2012

How does healing happen?

When I was learning hypnotherapy, one of the things we learned to do was to help people stop smoking using hypnosis. I watched with both my external eyes and my clairvoyance as the teacher did the procedure (I actually do it differently today). What I saw was a revelation:

As the teacher hypnotized the student, both of their energy fields grew large and sort of diaphanous -- until they merged into one large field. Then certain words were spoken and other things happened, and eventually, as the session concluded, their fields shrunk down again into their individual ones. The field of  the 'client' (actually a fellow student) shrunk into a slightly different form than the one with which she'd started the session. My guides tell me that part of her change came from her field directly modeling the more healthy field with which it had been merged.

So healing comes, at least in part, from a group field. And the less healthy parts of the field, model and take energy from, the healthier parts.

Why do I bring this up? Because last week, I was part of an intervention for an alcoholic. The alcoholic did make a shift, and I'm pretty sure it was, at least in part, from the field effect.

It also had a profound effect on me. I'll tell you about it -- but I don't want to do it in writing, so you'll have to listen to my radio show, "Your Life, Your Relationships" on 8/29/12 (or the podcast) to hear that part.

Tuesday, August 21, 2012

Seasons of Life

Last week, I was living in what was surely the outskirts of the 8th circle of hell, simply due to the oppressive heat. This week, though, things are different:

I'm noticing that the shadows are longer on my daily morning walks, the light more golden. The tops of the maple trees are beginning to be tinged with orange. Kids are out, on their way to school, and more adults are out exercising, presumably because it's cool enough to do so. 

So summer gently gives way to autumn, which will elide into winter, which will warm into spring which will give way to autumn again. And so on and so on...

Much has been said about the seasons of a person's life. Spring is childhood, summer is the teen years and early adulthood, autumn is middle age and winter is old age. But those seasons, those same cycles,  exist in everything nature does, and everything we do.

A tree begins life as a seed, grows tall and stays mature for many years, but each tree species has a natural life length, so eventually all trees grow old and die. Within that life cycle, however, there are the annual cycles of the seasons: buds then flowers in spring, then leaves which grow large and deep green as summer begins, then fade into other colors and finally drop off in autumn, to be followed by a dormant period in winter. So there are cycles within cycles.

This is true of everything in our lives: relationships, jobs, businesses. So a romantic relationship usually begins with that crackle of newness: the first look, the first flirtation, the first date, the first kiss, etc. Eventually, this grows into stability: you know each other well enough to predict what he wants for dinner, when she'll want to nap, what each of you will get annoyed about. And you can let that annoyance grow(autumn) till it destroys the relationship, or you can work at it, and each change yourself enough that the relationship continues. So when autumn comes, either the relationship can drop off, or certain beliefs and attitudes can drop off. This can take a while, especially if you are retreating into yourself to do internal work (winter). If the beliefs change, then you go into spring again. It's like kissing and making up, but on a deeper scale.

When you start a new job, you learn the people, the systems, the tasks -- it's all new, and often a bit overwhelming (spring). Then you settle in for a while, and all is well (summer). Then something happens: you get a new boss, or the work changes, or the company is sold and the systems change, and there you are in autumn again. Things are unstable, even chaotic, and you generally have to let go of something -- an old way of doing something, or a belief about something, in order to get back to stability. Sometimes, as in the case of a layoff, what drops off is you; you leave the company. And look for work (winter or dormancy) and then begin another new job (spring again).

Within that larger cycle, there will be lots of smaller ones -- you develop a relationship with a coworker (spring). That relationship works for a long while (summer) -- and then she leaves the company (autumn). You may miss her for a while (winter) and then develop a new relationship with her replacement (spring). And if you stay in touch with your former coworker, that's different than it used to be, because you no longer see each other every day (spring again).

So everything in our lives has a cycle -- and it's useful to note where you are in the cycles in different parts of your life. What's new? What's stable? What's falling apart? What's dormant?

{With great thanks to Tim and Kris Hallbom, whose wonderful Wealthy Mind workshop talks about this, among a great many things.)

Tuesday, August 14, 2012

Two Degrees of Separation

The West Coast Dowsers' Conference, where I taught one of the sessions 6 weeks ago, was at UC Santa Cruz. We stayed in the dorms and ate in the dining hall of one of the residential colleges.

Although I'm fairly shy, I did manage one night to sit down at dinner with some strangers. Of course, we had a lovely conversation -- the people at the Dowsers' Conference are all lovely, and we obviously have something in common. The woman who sat diagonally across from me was from Milwaukee -- and she was a real estate agent, so we had that in common. In fact, our discussion was mostly about commercial property. She looked to be of South Asian ancestry, and had a South Asian name, but I honestly didn't think twice about that. We exchanged business cards, and I added her to my mailing list.

Last week, I wrote about the Oak Creek shooting, and posited that perhaps it was not random violence.  Since my weekly email contains a teaser for my blog post, she got that teaser, as well as the link.

A day later, I got an email from the Milwaukee woman, saying that the Oak Creek temple was her temple! She said she knew 3 of those who'd died, and several women who'd been hiding in the kitchen with the kids. That makes me only 2 degrees of separation from the people who died -- and you only 3 degrees of separation. It's a really small world. How is this possible?

It's possible because of small world networks. 

Consider the  game, Six Degrees of Kevin Bacon, where players try to tie a given actor to Kevin Bacon in as few steps as possible, based on the movies they’ve acted in together. So if an actor has worked in a movie with Mr. Bacon, he has a Bacon number of 1, if an actor has worked with an actor who has worked with Mr. Bacon, she has a Bacon number of 2, and so on. As you can see in the table below, using data from the internet movie data base,, which has over 500,000 actors, the vast majority of actors are within 3 degrees of separation from Bacon, and virtually all are within 4 degrees:

Degrees of Separation      Cumulative Bacon Percentage    

        1                                                .3
        2                                            24.1
        3                                            84.9
        4                                            98.8

The book, “Six Degrees”, by Duncan Watts, from which the above data is abstracted, is all about “small world” networks, looking at networks as different as movie actors and the power grid from a mulitdisciplinary approach. After considering several models and research from the 1930’s onward, he concludes that “As long as individuals are more likely to know other people like them, and — crucially — as long as they measure similarity along more than one social dimension, then not only will short paths exist between almost anyone almost anywhere, but also individuals... will be able to find them.” And other research suggests that the two most powerful dimensions to explore are geographical connections and professional ones.

Tuesday, August 07, 2012

Was the Oak Creek shooting a random act?

I feel sick. Literally. I just heard about the death of the father of a friend of a friend. I'm sure you heard about it, too  -- the shooting at the Oak Creek Sikh temple. (Amazing how small the world is, huh?)

There is a back story here -- one you are not going to hear on the nightly news. I think the mass murder in Oak Creek happened to prevent a documentary film from being made. Here's the story:

Dr. Steven Greer, who started the disclosure movement, has had numerous attempts on his life over the years, because he has brought forward hundreds of credible witnesses to the fact that extra-terrestrials are here, and because he ties this to the suppression of technology. Because I am one of his students, I was present at one of the threats, if not an exact attempt (no shots were fired) -- so I know this is no joke and no exaggeration. 

Amardeep Kaleka, an Emmy-winning documentary film producer, had signed on with Dr. Steven Greer, to produce a feature-length movie about Dr. Greer's work. As the website for the movie says,

"This film exposes the greatest story never told:
  • The Earth has been visited by people from other worlds who are not malicious, but in fact concerned for the future of humanity.
  • A cabal of military, industrial and financial interests have kept this contact and what we have learned from it secret for over 60 years.
  • Their secrecy is meant to suppress the knowledge that can liberate the world from the yoke of oil, gas, coal and nuclear power and replace the current world order with one of New Energy and true Freedom."
I understand that threats had been made on the life of Amardeep and his family. This was gossip, though, I have no proof.

 Amardeep's father, Satwant, was the head of the Oak Creek temple. He died a hero, trying to stop the shooter.

Here is how I back up my supposition:

Right after the shooting, there were said to be several shooters. That was later changed to just one. Satwant Kaleka was tackling the shooter, and he was shot in the back. If there were only one shooter, that means he was shot by a cop, right? No one, however, is talking about who shot him. How come?

Also, I note that Kaleka's name was originally on the NY Times website -- and is no longer there. How come?

Tuesday, July 31, 2012

Reframing Death

Through the magic of Facebook, I have learned that 2 acquaintances, both women in their 50s, have died recently.  My heart goes out to family and friends of each.

One was a woman who went to my high school. She was a couple of years behind me, so although I knew who she was (she was really out there, and hard to miss), I didn't really know her.

The other was a woman I met at a professional conference 2 years ago, and had gotten to know a bit on Facebook. She was always kind, and often funny. She often commented on my daily 'morning walk'  photos. I didn't really notice that she stopped commenting a month or two ago, and then I was shocked to see a post about her memorial service.

Then another friend said that two of her friends had gone recently. These were really friends, and she was sad about their crossing over, missing them. I reminded her that there is ample evidence that the soul survives the death of the body (see Twenty Cases Suggestive of Reincarnation, by Ian Stevenson, M.D. Stevenson found over 2500 cases, but only 20 are chronicled.) After you look at all that info, it's pretty hard to deny the reality of an eternal soul.

If you have a soul, and your friend has a soul, then it comes down to a communication problem. Most embodied humans have a hard time speaking with non-embodied souls. This makes missing someone more a communication problem than anything else.

Think of it this way: a little more than a century ago, if someone moved from the 'old country' to the US, or even from the Eastern seabord to the frontier, that person might never see his family again. If that person or his family were quite poor, perhaps illiterate, he might never even hear from his family again. So today, communicating with 'the other side' is not so different from communicating with someone on the other side of the world back then. In fact, we can use technology to communicate with those on the 'other side'.  

So I've been thinking about what we call 'death' lately. 

Then I was lying flat on my back in 'corpse pose' in yoga class yesterday, with the yoga teacher talking about breath, when it hit me that death is just another word for release.

Looked at from the soul's point of view, death is simply the soul releasing the body that housed it. The soul that held the molecules that made up the body in place, allows those molecules to release all the elements in them to be reused. (It's called decay, but really, it's recycling.)

This is true for non-physical deaths, too.

While you can say a romantic relationship dies, from the point of view of each of the partners, it's simply releasing the attachment to the other person. This leaves each person free to use the energy that held the relationship in place for other things -- career, home, other relationships.

While you can say that a company that files Chapter 7 bankruptcy dies, what actually happens is that the parts are released to other entities. For example, hard assets can be sold off -- released -- to other people or companies.

Even software has deaths -- updated versions are called releases!

So if someone 'dies', while it is quite natural to miss the easy communication you had with someone, you might consider learning to communicate telepathically. If someone or something dies, you might consider how to use the energy and/or material that has been released in a new way.

Monday, July 23, 2012

What Do You Know? And How Do You Know it?

Friday night, my husband, Kosta, and I were in San Francisco. We were hungry, and stopped in to a funky little place with a diner-ish menu. As we sat down in our booth, there were 4 or 5 people in the booth next to us, who seemed to be finishing up their meal. I didn't pay much attention to them, but noticed they were of both genders, probably in their 20s.

After they left, the 50-ish waiter covering both our booths (actually, the whole restaurant, as business was slow), started kvetching (complaining, for you non-Yiddish speakers, but it also has the connotation of whining, and doing it persistently) about the people who'd just left, "Those are the worst customers I've ever had... probably raised by wolves. They just don't know how to act." And on.. and on...

When I asked what they'd done to earn that stream of bitching, he said that they'd asked him to justify the price of each menu item, asked for everything done in a slightly different way than on the menu, then complained about being charged for substitutions, and decided at the end of the meal that they wanted separate checks. Having been a waitress one summer in college, I completely sympathize with his estimation of these customers.

By this point, I'd detected a slight New York accent. I didn't want to 'lead the witness', but slipped into his phraseology, and asked, "Where ya from?" with a smile.

"Queens, and proud of it!", he answered. Then he began to kvetch about San Franciscans, in general, "No one will tell you like it is, everyone just tells you what you want to hear." And on... and on... He mentioned that all his friends still lived in Queens, that he was the only one who'd left.

"Why don't you just move back?", I asked, still smiling.

"I'm gonna be buried there!", he answered defiantly -- but he was smiling, too., as he left to put in our orders.

At this point, I just knew that he'd moved to SF 30 years ago because he was gay, and and said as much to Kosta. He was surprised, and asked me me how I knew the waiter's story.

This was a complete shock -- I just assumed everyone would have known that -- that he knew that -- because it was so obvious to me. We agreed to ask the waiter how long he'd been in SF, his sexual orientation seeming a bit too personal to ask a complete stranger.

Sure enough -- he'd been in SF for 25 years. Okay, I was off by 5 years -- but then I could have been off by a few years in his age, too.

Kosta tried to pass it off as, "my wife, the psychic lady". But to me, being psychic is doing readings. And readings are something I do in an hypnotic state, where I'm really focused on the other person, with my guides around me, showing me pictures and talking to me, giving me information I couldn't possibly know any other way, especially since I rarely even meet, or see photos of, the people I read.

So I really had to think about how I knew that he'd been in SF for so long. When I backed into the logic of it, it went like this:

The waiter clearly loved NY and had friends and family there, clearly thought it was a great place. He'd been in SF long enough to complain about the differences between the two cities. 30 years ago, when he'd been around 20, NY was even bigger and more powerful in relation to SF than it is today; you could get pretty much anything there. The only reason you'd leave NY to come to SF was lifestyle -- and SF being the gay mecca of the world would probably explain it.

Absolutely none of these thoughts was conscious. It's just normal for me to infer things -- and they often turn out to be right. I don't think of this as psychic/intuitive; it's just what I've always done. It's what used to piss people off about me as a kid, because I did it, and knew stuff, and didn't know not to say it. I still don't know if they were angry because I knew things I wasn't supposed to know -- and was right, or because I said these things -- and lots of them were, I guess, embarrassing to the adults. Anyway, what I learned was to shut up, and only to use the information when I needed it for my own protection.

The dirty little secret here is that my Dad used to do this stuff, too. I spent a lot of time with him as a child, and he'd look at complete strangers and tell me about them. He did it with a medical eye, like seeing the telltale signs of alcoholism -- but I suspect he knew a lot more than he could have gotten just that way. Of course, he never admitted that he was in any way psychic.

I learned how to do it, at least the more everyday parts of being psychic, as a skill, by copying my parent, like all kids do. (Thanks, Dad!)

So this intuition is just a skill, like any other, that everyone can do -- they just maybe haven't been taught how. We all pick up little clues about each other, about the world, that we don't have the bandwidth to process with our conscious minds. (This is what Malcolm Gladwell was talking about in Blink.) We combine that with what we already know about the world to form an even more complete picture of the world.

So if you didn't have a parent who modeled intuition for you, how do you learn?  
  • You wonder about things, or people, create a hypothesis -- and check it out (like we asked the waiter)
  • You let yourself imagine how something, or someone, might have gotten to be the way that it is -- and check it out.
And sooner or later, you'll find yourself just knowing that your waiter moved to San Francisco a couple of decades ago.

Tuesday, July 10, 2012

The Value of a Vacation

  • VACATION:  a period spent away from home or business in travel or recreation (had a restful vacation at the beach)
I spent the last 2 1/2 days at the West Coast Dowsers' Conference, where I was a speaker and led a meditation -- but that was only 1 1/2 hours out of the whole weekend. That meant that the rest of the time was a vacation.

The Dowsers' Conference is a tiny conference, just a little over 200 people, and of those, about 50 are speakers and another 15 or so are volunteers. What's great about this, though, is the generosity of the community -- everyone is open to their psychic abilities, and most are already using them in one way or another. Because of that openness, the synchronicities are amazing! Each person seems to meet the right person to help in just the way she or he needs at the moment. Sometimes that's in a class, and it's often in line at the cafeteria, or walking back and forth between buildings.

I am no exception. There are 4 class periods a day, and 5 speakers in each of them. So you have to choose which class to attend in each time slot. This being a dowsers' conference, I decided to choose each class using the ideomotor finger response (a standard hypnotic technique for communication with your unconscious mind, repurposed for  dowsing). The first class I attended was from a chi gung master and channel, Ellie, who I consider a friend, despite the fact that we've only met twice (and this weekend was one of the two times), and that we've only talked on the phone about a dozen times several years ago.

What a revelation! It turns out that Ellie and I have been getting the same information for the last few years, but hearing her talk about it, all in one place and at one time, made it completely new for me! I realized whom I need to forgive to move my business forward (and I've already done that), and that it is no longer appropriate for me to make decisions for my business based on what one is 'supposed' to do to market a service. All my own business guidance must now come from my guides. Duh! And if the guidance says 'do nothing', as it has been saying all year, then I have to listen to that (much as it pains me). And I can draw my clients to me using the process I developed 15 years ago that brought my wonderful husband. (If you want to learn the process, please call me at 888-4-HOLLIS).

Then, I was browsing through the bookstore, and came upon a pamphlet, entitled "99 Things You Can do with Dowsing". It included such ideas as dowsing whether a particular food, or method of food preparation is beneficial to you, or a cleaning product is beneficial for you and others in your home. Wow! So I can dowse whether or not to do different kinds of work, whether or not I should teach a class, and when it should begin, etc.

Then I was drawn to another class -- this one on communicating with animals psychically. We each had to count off in 1s and 2s. I was a '2', seated  between two '1's. i just knew I had to work with the woman to my left, that she'd be a better partner for me. Wow, was she! She was very accurate in talking with my lovely cat, Beast, and then I communicated with a dog she is just getting to know (new boyfriend's dog). This was really easy, and she verified pretty much everything I said. Then we did a few group readings of particular animals -- again, really easy, and what I said was verified by the human asking the question.

It turned out that my class partner is, among other things, a professional animal communicator! And she asked me to help with a client's cat, whose legs give out often and with no warning, and for no apparent reason. I saw immediately and clearly that the cat had been a draft horse in another lifetime, worked to death at a plow, when its legs gave out. She thanked me, and said that made sense, and that she could now work with the cat to heal it. Then she told me that I was a natural, and already doing animal readings on the inner planes, and that I should tell everyone that I do this. So:

I do animal readings! And they are half the price of my human ones until July 23. Please call me now at 888-4-HOLLIS (888-446-5547) if you have an animal with a behavior problem. 

When I asked her why she'd come to this class, she said she thought there was a missing piece for her in the class. It turned out that I was the person who had the missing piece for her!

So my vacation resulted in re-creation -- a new attitude to my work, and new work! Pretty cool for a 2 day vacation, huh?

PLEASE NOTE: a 'staycation' is, by definition, not a vacation.

Monday, June 25, 2012

Doing the right thing?

Every now and then, the universe tells you that you're doing the right thing. The affirmation can come in many ways -- a song on the radio that echoes what you've been thinking (especially if it's a rarely played oldie), your eye being drawn to something that you've passed a million times but never noticed, or something a complete stranger says. I think what happened to me on Saturday was one of those.

I was in the (long) checkout line at a big box store, when a young woman approached me to say she was opening a new register and would I please start a new line at her check stand.

As I waited for the register to come online, she gestured to a small plaque she had propped up by the screen, and said to the packing guy, with a perplexed smile, "Look what they just gave me! I'm happy, but look at it!" And she showed me the plaque, as well. It was an engraved wooden plaque, which read

Employee of the Month

 2011? It's already June of 2012!

Then she asked, "What do I do? Do I refuse it? I don't want to do that, I'm proud to be Employee of the Month. But I don't want this." 

The packing guy looked confused, too.

I suggested that she go to whomever gave her the plaque and say, "Thanks so much! I'm glad you think enough of me to make me Employee of the Month. And I'm such a good employee that I noticed what's wrong with the plaque." And turn the plaque to them with a huge smile. And wait, because it was really hard to miss that "2011".

Now this may seem a little odd, but I take that happening to me as a sign that I'm doing the right thing doing my radio advice show, and that I should keep on keeping on.

Does this happen to you? How? I'd love to hear stories of how you know you're on the right track.

Tuesday, June 19, 2012

Join me at the Dowsers' Conference!

I'll be teaching people how to look into the future for themselves this July 7 - 9 at the West Coast Dowsers' Conference. Come play with me! :)

I always love participating in the Dowsers' Conferences, because they feel like home, a real community of psychics, or at least people who are open to psychic information. There are a million ways to get that info - some of which involve the use of a pendulum, called dowsing. (Since I don't use a pendulum, I didn't think of myself as a dowser, till it was explained to me that they're open to all modes of getting info.)

Plus I always learn something -- and that's a real draw for me. Last time, I bent a spoon, which is ridiculously easy. So did pretty much everyone else in the room! And I was part of a group where we took turns lifting each other. 4 of us repeatedly lifted a 5th person with just our joined forefingers! And one of those guys was HUGE. Obviously, psychokinesis is real.

Come play with all of us! Hope you can make it!

Tuesday, June 12, 2012

Are you psychic? 8 ways to tell

Every time I 'read' a new client, I look at their ability to get information intuitively aka psychically. Lately I've had a few who were quite psychic, but didn't know that, and were uncomfortable with it. All they knew was they knew or felt things that they weren't 'supposed' to know. At the end of our session, one of these clients said, 'thanks for letting me know I'm not crazy'.

So I thought I'd give you the most common ways people experience their psychic abilities, when they don't know the abilities are psychic abilities -- the things that make people think they're crazy.  Often people experience more than one, but it's rare for someone to have ALL of them. I'm listing them in the order of the chakras with which they're associated. For more on the chakras, go here.
  • I'm jumpy for 'no reason' - You might get psychic information in your first chakra, which is normally concerned with survival stuff (health, money, etc.). The problem is that when you're getting psychic information here, this information may not be about you. So when you feel nervous or jumpy, you have to ask yourself, "Is this even about me?" If the answer is yes, deal with it yourself. If the answer is no, then sit with it, and see if the information becomes more specific. If you can't get anything more specific, let it go and relax.
  • I can feel other people's feelings -This is a classic example of a wide open 2nd chakra. To some degree, we are all wired for this (using mirror neurons) and it is definitely stronger in some people than in others. For many, this is a good thing. But for some people, others' feelings hijack your own life. There are things you can do to stop this, but a written description won't suffice.
  • I can feel the energy of a place - This is similar to feeling others' feelings -- except no mirror neurons are involved. Back when I was opening up psychically, I attended a Sunday open house of a house that was for sale, on the recommendation of my realtor. Though the house had all the features I was looking for, I was so creeped out by the feeling of the place that I literally ran out in under 2 minutes. The next day, the realtor told me that the house was owned by a fugitive who was wanted for murder.
  • I have these internal arguments - And it's not just yes/no or should/shouldn't. There are multiple lines of argument from different points of view. I suggest that in this case, you are probably hearing your guides' points of view. There are things you can do to work with this, and turn it into an asset rather than an annoyance, but a written description won't suffice. This is a throat (5th) chakra ability.
  • I can hear other people's thoughts or or see other people's pictures - Have you ever had a thought, and then had it immediately contradicted by another? Many years ago, my (now ex) husband went out of town on a business trip while I moved house for us. The new place was closer to the airport than the old one. When I picked him up at SFO, he said he wanted to drive, which was fine with me. As we crossed the Golden Gate Bridge, I pictured in my mind our new exit, and driving to our new home. Immediately afterwards, an image of the old exit came into my mind. I said, "No, we've moved, we're getting off at the Sausalito exit." To which he replied, "Thanks." (I was so sure that I'd seen his picture that I never even asked him. And I was right, because he wasn't even surprised when I corrected him.) My example is a third eye (6th chakra) one, but hearing others' thoughts is either throat chakra or crown (7th) chakra  ability.
  • I get images of the future, places I've never been, people I've never met - Classic clairvoyance (third eye)! The problem with these is that you don't know what the images are until later. It's important to remember these (even keep notes), so that when they show up in real life, you'll understand (a) that you 'saw' this stuff earlier and (b) learn what sorts of things/people/ places/events you tend to foresee.
  •  I 'just know' stuff - I 'just know' what someone else is thinking, or who's on the other end of the phone when I pick it up (and no, Caller ID doesn't count). Again, this is a crown chakra ability, which is direct mind to mind communication. When it's with a living human, it's called telepathy. When it's with a discarnate being, it's called channeling.
  • I have precognitive dreams -  This is often astral travel, which is sending your consciousness to other places and/or times. Sometimes (though this will feel completely different, and is not technically a dream), it's actually leaving your body to go to another point in space/time.
If you do any of these things, and want to learn more about your abilities and/or practice them in a safe setting, please send me an email. I'm thinking of doing my teleseminar series again, beginning in August. It will be twice a month, for about 1 1/4 hours/class, at 5:30PM PT. I am taking votes on whether Tuesdays or Thursdays are preferable. Please let me know which day you prefer.

Tuesday, June 05, 2012

The Technologically Mediated Relationship

No, I'm not talking about sex toys! :)

A friend told me this story:

"My Mom and I have never had the best of relationships, but in the past few years, it's gotten a LOT worse. She's had a hearing problem, which she really didn't want to acknowledge.  I knew she had a problem, because when I got to her house, if she had the TV on, just walking into the house hurt my ears.

"Our interactions would go like this:

"I'd say something in my normal, conversational voice. She'd accuse me of speaking too softly, and get angry. This would be true, even if someone else, like my husband, were in the room, and could hear me clearly. I'd get angry right back, because I knew that I was speaking normally, and she 'should' be able to hear me. That is, I knew it was her problem, and I was angry that she was making it my problem, rather than owning it herself.

"It's not that I didn't try to speak more loudly. It was hard to remember to do it, and even when I did, I practically had to scream in order for her to hear me. That alone made me angry, because I normally only raise my voice when I get angry. That is, my body associates using a loud voice with being angry, and so just speaking loudly would tend to make me angry.

"Even worse, she could understand my husband better than she understood me.Yes, he'd speak a tiny bit more loudly than usual -- but he was definitely not screaming. So of course he was doing something right, and I was not speaking up just to spite her.

"I broached the subject of hearing aids, and getting her hearing tested, several times. Each time she pooh-poohed the idea for a different reason: my hearing is fine, they're too expensive, they don't really help, because you hear so much other noise that they're confusing, etc.

"One night, we all went to my cousin's house for a family dinner. There were 7 of us there, and 6 of us were having a wonderful time, chatting and laughing at the table. I sat across from my mother, and could see her bewilderment. Clearly she couldn't follow us. After dinner, I said to her, THIS is why you need hearing aids. And she actually heard me -- both literally and figuratively!

"As it happens, my cousin has some hearing loss, and recommended a good audiologist. Mom had her hearing tested, and sure enough, she had major hearing loss, from 40% in the lower registers to 90% in the higher registers. This explains why she could hear my husband's lower pitched voice than my relatively high pitched one.

"A few weeks later, she went back to get the hearing aids. The audiologist explained that she would need to wear them every day, so that her brain would become reaccustomed to hearing sound from all sources -- ones she wanted to hear and ones that seemed like just noise -- so that she'd automatically screen out the things she didn't need or want to hear. Apparently this ability attenuates with hearing loss, that is, the neurological wiring gets weaker (use it or lose it), and needs to be reestablished.

"We went out for dinner in a moderately noisy restaurant just a couple of days after she'd gotten the hearing aids. We had a lovely dinner conversation! She could hear me, and all those years of angry conversations were gone! We were speaking like friends for the first time in many years.

"This feels like a miracle to me -- and I know it's only technology."

I'm sharing my friend's story because sometimes, the fix to a relationship is really simple -- and can literally be done with technology.

Tuesday, May 29, 2012

Succeeding in the New Millenium

In today's winner-take-all world, where 400 individuals have more wealth than the bottom half of US households combined (about 100 million households), and have rigged the system to take still more (you have to listen to my show at 6PM ET/3PM PT on Wednesday, 5/30, to hear more about this), the rest of us have to revise our definition of success away from the financial. Here's my take:
  • Be who you want to be - I'm talking character here, qualities, not labels. Do you want to be kind? loving? funny? patient? persevering? dignified? supportive of others? You choose the content of your character -- and act from that every single day.
  • Choose your life experience
    • Do what you choose to do - Act according to your choices of who you want to be. If your choice is to be honest, find ways to do that in every situation. If your choice is to be kind, find ways to do that. (And when those choices conflict, you get to set up your own hierarchy of values. For example, is it more important to be honest, or to be kind in a given situation?)
    • Choose work that you like - or at least that is in alignment with your values and abilities. The wisdom handed down through generations in my Jewish family is that you need an education,  because the one thing no one can take from you is what is inside your head. I would expand that to include any skill that is useful, whether it is law or medicine, or carpentry, plumbing, gardening, cutting hair, etc. It's important that you work with honor -- honestly and to the best of your abilities. 
    • Choose the people you'd like to be around - Do you want to be around others who want to be what you want to be? People who support you in being who you want to be?
    • Experience the stuff you don't choose in the way you choose - We can't consciously choose everything in our lives. No one chooses to lose a child. Hardly anyone chooses to have the company that employs them shut down. But we can choose how we react. Azim Khamisa chose to turn the tragedy of his son's random murder into an opportunity to teach thousands of young people about forgiveness. (To hear his amazing story, click here.)
    • Appreciate everything you do have - You get more of what you focus on - and appreciation is a form of focus. Appreciate your health, the wonderful people -- and the love -- in your life, the food you eat, the roof over your head. 
Being who you choose to be and having the life experience you choose - priceless. 

Monday, May 21, 2012

7 Ways to Help a Friend through a Bad Time

Recently a friend had a huge fight with her grown daughter -- and any woman knows that mother-daughter issues can seem insurmountable. I barely know the daughter, as I got to be friends with the mother after she'd gone off to college, so I really have no dog in this fight -- and I can only see the daughter's side clairvoyantly. But as a friend, it's my job to help my friend as best I can. So I thought about what I could do to help, and here's what I came up with (for simplicity, female pronouns/adjectives are understood to include both male and female):
  • Listen neutrally - Sometimes people just need to vent, that is, they need a shoulder to cry on. You can be that 'shoulder' really well by staying neutral yourself, and by doing Rogerian therapy. This is a fancy term for mirroring someone's body position and repeating their words back to them. For example, if your friend says, "I'm upset", you say, "I hear you're upset", or "I get that you're upset", or "You're upset about...?" or "What exactly is upsetting you?" The main point here is that you repeat their word, in this case, "upset". Do NOT substitute "angry" or "sad" or any other word -- this will change their experience, either to something inauthentic, or it will pop them out of any feeling at all.
  • Brainstorm actions she can take - After the emotion has been released, it's time for your friend to figure out what to do about the situation. You can take notes, or perhaps even offer ideas. Remember, you're just throwing ideas out there. It's important to be unattached to whether or not any of them (especially yours!) are ever put into action.
  • Do chores or run errands - Sometimes, in a crisis, especially one where someone is ill or physically harmed, the most help you can provide is with your hands and feet: picking up a prescription, watching the kids, cooking dinner, cleaning house, etc. All of those can be sanity savers.
  • Teach her ho'oponopono - This is a very simple exercise of holding someone's image in your mind, and then repeating, "I'm sorry. Please forgive me. Thank you. I love you." For the background on ho'oponopono, as well as some amazing examples of its efficacy, listen to this interview with Marci Shimoff and this story from a listener who heard my interview with Marci.
  • Teach her to cut cords (or do it for her with her permission) - People send streamers of energy, called cords, to others. They can send positive energy (e.g., love) or negative energy (e.g., negative judgements). Sometimes they even use cords like vacuum cleaners, to suck energy out of others (the original energy vampires). You can ask to be shown where these cords are, and then cut them, attaching the free ends to white light.
  • Teach her to ground - It always helps to connect to Mother Earth. This is just a simple visualization, like growing roots from your feet into the center of the Earth, and then pulling up healing energy from Her.
  • Remind her of the power of prayer - If she believes in nonphysical beings (angels, guides, ancestors, fairies, God/Goddess, whatever) that can be of help, these should be enlisted. They might help -- and there's no harm in asking. At least your friend might feel comforted by the reminder that help is out there. 

Monday, May 14, 2012

Staying sane in a 24/7 world

Shhh.... I have another business. It's a tiny little online business, with sales so far, in this, its first year, in the mid 3 figures. ;) Online businesses are supposed to be easy, right? Set it up, and it chugs away, as my partner in the business says, a ka-ching machine.

Not so much! It turns out that our market, CA real estate agents and brokers, is not hugely computer savvy. Many of our customers and potential customers want to talk to us before signing up, and many of our customers call us for help logging on, or re-logging on, having lost their user names or passwords. I am NOT the tech help, which is provided by our online host, another small company in Oregon, who works normal business hours, Monday - Friday, 8:30AM to 5PM.

Here's the problem: if they don't get an answer to their questions before they sign up, they just buy from someone else. If they don't get support whenever they want it, 24/7, they're angry.

And there are only two of us. Thank god it's not just me. Come to think of it, my 888-4-HOLLIS number rings 24/7, too, and if I don't answer when it rings, I lose that new customer, as well.

So how do you, a human being with normal needs for sleep and food and exercise and other bodily functions, do business in a 24/7 world?

Luckily, I have some lessons to fall back on from my Dad, who started his career in medicine as a pediatrician:
  • Get help in the form of technology - Way back in the early 1960s, before there were answering machines, my Dad had an answering service. The operators worked for many physicians, and were trained to ferret out what could wait till business hours, and what was probably an emergency. The operators always knew where my Dad was (remember, this was before cell phones, too), and were trained to take the patient's name and number and then call Dad if it seemed critical.
  • Get help in the form of other people - Eventually, my Dad had a partner, and they switched off weekends and holidays, so that at least every other weekend, my Dad could really relax, knowing the phone wouldn't ring.
  • Pick your business carefully - My Dad switched the kind of medicine he specialized in, from pediatrics, where kids get sick all the time, to allergies, where if the patient gets his autoimmune boosting injections and is careful in avoiding certain allergens, no emergencies should come up. Still, I learned very early to always have a book with me, because we never knew when dinner might be interrupted by Dad needing to head to the office or the hospital. 
Today, we are all reachable 24/7 on our smart phones, by cell, text and email. So the problem is not how to be reachable, but how to avoid being reached, so we can preserve our humanity, our sanity, and our relationships (interrupt a romantic dinner for a client text, anyone?), and still do business. In some way, though, the same rules apply:
  •  Get help in the form of technology - Set outgoing messages and autoresponders to answer with a pleasant message that includes what your normal business hours are, and what to do until then, like call emergency tech support.
  •  Get help in the form of other people - We still need partners, people to cover for us when we are on vacation or out of the country. The more people who can cover, the better -- this explains the rise of large physician groups, by the way.
  • Pick your business carefully - Do you want to be in a business where emergencies happen? Emergencies don't happen if you're a corporate trainer, for example. If you're in a business with emergencies, can you charge more, perhaps a LOT more, if those emergencies happen outside business hours, like plumbers do? 
  • Accept that you're going to lose some business -What price are your sanity, your humanity, and your relationships worth?
If you have any ideas about what else to do, post them here or email me -- I'd love to hear them!

Monday, May 07, 2012

Does Believing Something Different Mean You're Crazy?

I book my own guests for my for my radio show, "Your Life, Your Relationships". Because I’m a hypnotherapist and NLP Master Practitioner, I know a lot of very talented healers, so some of my guests are friends.
Last week, I called a friend to be a guest on my show. This is someone I consider a real friend, not an acquaintance, as we were fairly deeply involved in each other’s lives at one point, even though that period was over a decade ago. She is someone I respect deeply, for her intelligence, knowledge, competence, clarity and kindness.
She said she wouldn’t appear on my show, because she’d heard an earlier show, in which I’d talked about star visitors (aka ETs), and she was afraid to be publicly associated with me. Her market is a corporate market, and she’s afraid that if she is even heard on a show where such things are discussed, then she’ll lose business. (Personally, I think she’s being a bit paranoid, but it’s her business and her life, so she gets to decide.) 
She did offer that if I were willing to promise not to talk about star visitors on the show she was on, then she’d come on the show. But since I book my guests a month in advance, and I plan the rest of the show days in advance, there was no way I could promise that. And in any case, why would I give a guest veto power over the content of the rest of the show?
To be fair, she was very polite, and said that she respected my choice to believe what I believe, and that I do actually believe it. She just didn’t want to be publicly associated with it. Clearly, though, she doesn’t believe what I believe.This is fine -- and if you, like my friend, don't believe me, please watch this video. It's what convinced me. Since then, of course, I've had my own experiences.
Hmmmm… this feels really familiar. What does this remind me of?
Oh, right, I’ve been through this before! Back when I began to open up my psychic abilities, this same thing happened. 
As I acknowledged what was going on with me, my fiance, my parents, most of my extended family, and most of my friends from Harvard Business School (HBS) thought I was nuts. (A big shout out here to my Princeton friends, who never thought that.)
Some, who cared about me, said they were worried about the direction I was taking. Others, many others, just disappeared from my life. 
The joke was on them, though. Many of them eventually called me for help. They wanted my clairvoyant take on the future, for themselves, their businesses or their loved ones.
The culture changed, too. In 2001, I was asked to be on an alumni panel looking into the future at HBS. In a standing-room-only lecture hall of about 100 people, about 1/3 clearly believed that I what I was talking about was real. Another 1/3 were on the fence. Only 1/3 were completely dismissive.
Why am I talking about this?
Because as you grow and change and open up to new information, the people (at least, some of the people) closest to you are going to make you wrong for it. It’s much easier to make you wrong than to examine their own beliefs. This is true whether the new beliefs are about the psychic, the political or something else.
They may want you to stay the same to keep you close to them. Or perhaps they have another agenda – perhaps they want to control you. There is a lot of disinformation out there (Fox News, anyone?), and anyone who dares to step outside the mainstream story (Al Queda, and only Al Queda, was responsible for 9/11, for example) is shunned at best, attacked at worst.
What should you do?
·      Know what you know – Own your own experience. You saw it, heard it, felt it – just because someone else didn’t doesn’t mean you were wrong. It just means they weren’t in your shoes. Did you know that a rainbow looks different depending on where you are standing? Someone standing a few feet away from you might not see the rainbow at all. All of reality is like this.
·      Be open to new information – and check it out. Again, there’s a lot of disinformation out there.
·      Do not let someone else’s disbelief talk you out of knowing what you know. Hear their disbelief as fear, because for most people, that's what it is. Open your heart, and allow them to be afraid. Everyone grows and changes, but some do it more slowly than others. Allow each person his/her process.
·      Listen for openings in other people. Maybe some are open to hearing about political lies, or the 99% movement, but not to anything about their intuition, or about ETs. Others may be willing to open up to their intuition, especially if you language it properly, but not to political lies, or ETs. 
·      Meet people where they are. If they’re open to hearing about political malfeasance, talk to them about that. If they’re open to hearing about intuition or angels or guides, talk to them about that. If they’re interested in science fiction, maybe they’re open to hearing about ETs.
Remember, you are not going to convince everyone! You may only move one person out of ten, and that person one tiny bit. But this is how public opinion changes, one person at a time, perhaps shifting just a bit. Why make yourself crazy, beating yourself up if you never seem to affect anyone? Accept that you are trying, and you are doing the best you can.
Remember also that you affect people three levels out in your networks – your friends’ friends’ friends. So if you only have 20 friends, and each of them only has 20 friends, you are still affecting 8000 people. If each of you has 100 friends, then that’s 1 million people. If each of you has 150 friends, then that’s 3.375 million people you affect.
Let’s look at it another way. The transcendental meditation (TM) people did some experiments to see what the effect of TM was on crime. What they learned was that the square root of 1% of the population of an area meditating was enough to lower the crime rate significantly.
The square root of 1% of earth’s population of 7 billion people is 8,367 people. So if your network, and each of your friend’s networks, is 21 people, then you have enough of a network to change the world, simply by changing yourself.