Stick your toes where they belong

~ Toni O’KEEFFE

Why are we drawn to the peaceful, unencumbered wilds of nature?
~ the awe of forest paths that magically transform when rays of light stream in between the branches of towering old growth trees or,
~ feel inspired when we set our eyes on majestic mountain peaks draped with snow, or,
~ melt into a state of relaxation gazing at an expansive indigo sky dressed in twinkling stars, or
~ fall into a state of peaceful reverence when we sink our toes into the sand and watch the rising and setting of the sun?

Why do these and the other sights, sounds and smells of nature call to us, arouse our senses, bring us comfort and cause us to pause and exhale?

I think this call into the wild is our deepest self calling us home.

Our DNA evolved in nature. Our ancestors spent most of their time in the natural world. We’re hard wired to live amongst the trees, near the water and under the sky.

It’s only been in the last couple of centuries that we’ve strayed away from where we belong and moved into loud overcrowded, concrete jungles and on to busy asphalt highways.

Numerous studies have shown spending time in nature is a natural remedy for stress, can lower blood pressure, boast immune system functioning, reduce anxiety, and improve mood. That’s a pretty good “pill”.

Yet, humanity spends trillion of dollars annually purchasing and consuming self help products and services to make us feel well, less anxious and less stressed; things we’d feel if we spent more time in the great outdoors.

Spending time in nature is like pushing the reset button and going back to our original factory😊settings.

Going into nature is peaceful, comfortable and reminds us of home because, it is home, it is where we’re meant to be.

When you feel the stress of our modern world impacting your well being, go home, stick your toes, your heart and your soul where they belong and BE well.

Toni O’KEEFFE ~🌹❤️

This storm will pass

Not all of life’s storms are destructive.
Some come to shake us up, so we can put things back together, not the way they were, but, the way they’re meant to be.

Good things grow from the messiest parts of our lives. Every challenge, loss and disappointment brings new opportunities.

There really is calm and light after every storm. Yup, after, every, single, one.
🌈 ☀️❤️☀️🌈

Toni O’KEEFFE ~🌹❤️

Life sends us helpers

Here’s a little secret. Life sends us helpers. These helpers arrive when we need them the most.

When you’re struggling, be aware of who comes into your life unexpectedly. You don’t have to know why they show up or what they’re here to do, something inside you “will know” you need them. Trust that voice.

Put your ego, pride, judgment and stubbornness aside and believe they are here to help and guide you through the storms in your life.

If you’re in pain, lost, drowning in your own grief or chaos, you might not recognize them when they show up, you might even push them away.

They may look, sound, act or be different than those you generally welcome into your tribe, all the more reason to welcome them in.

No matter how strong, brave, smart or tough we think we are, none of us can do this alone. We’re not supposed to.

There are people you haven’t met yet, who will bring magic, peace, comfort, laughter, light, joy and healing into your life. Let them.

Toni O’KEEFFE ~🌹❤️

Life is messy and messy ain’t bad

The journey to figure out who we’re meant to be, is messy.
So are;
~ the colourful drippings from an artists brush, until a masterpiece is born.
~ run-on sentences and misspelt words, until a best selling novel emerges.
~ stacks of bricks and mortar, until they’re assembled to build a home.
~ musical notes that don’t make sense until a musician strings them together to create a melody.
~ a seedling stuck in the dirt, until it grows into a rose.

Everything is messy, until it becomes what its meant to be. Including all of us.

We don’t stop painting, writing, building, playing, fixing, or planting because it’s messy, we keep going until we recognize what we’ve created.

Each of us is a messy collection of experiences, emotions, missteps, wrong turns, hopes, dreams, heartbreaks and hooray’s tossed together to create a life.

And, although we don’t always understand why certain things happen, where we’re heading, or why certain people come in and out of our lives, our individual paths are constantly moving us towards who we’re meant to be.

What starts out messy, usually ends up being something beautiful. So hang in there, things are going to get messy, and messy ain’t bad.

Toni O’KEEFFE ~🌹❤️

The train

After 92 years of earthly life, Bud Hart was on the train to heaven, when he met Sunny an energetic little soul who after nine short years of earthly life, was also on the train.

“Wasn’t that the most exciting earthly adventure ever,” she asked, him.

“No, it was too hard. I hope they don’t send me back. They should give us a manual on how to be human.” he stated in a rather cold tone.

“Why would you need a manual?” she asked.

“To figure it all out,” he said.

She giggled. “But you don’t have to figure anything out. You were given everything you needed for this journey.”

“I most certainly was not!” He commanded.

She giggled again. “You silly soul. Everything you needed for your earthly journey was neatly tucked inside your heart. All you had to do was open it.

“How would I know that!”

“You feel it,” Sunny still giggling, replied.

She continued, “Sometimes pain, grief, anger, disappointment or stubbornness, are sitting on the heart making it heavy and hard to open. When we let those toxic emotions go, then, the heart will open. When it does, kindness, compassion, gratitude, love AND self-love flow effortlessly to us and from us and our earthly life can be enjoyed.”

“What if you can’t open your heart, what then smarty pants? Bud asked.

“If the weight is too much to bear alone, then others are sent to help you.”

Bud was taken aback by this little souls wisdom. He knew she was right. He had let years of anger, regret, resentment, pain, disappointment and ego centred thinking, weight him down, blocking his heart energy.

“How come you’re so wise, and why did your journey end at such a tender age.”

“I had the best life. My journey was exactly as long as it was supposed to be.
During my nine years all I knew was kindness, compassion, gratitude, selflessness, and love. I let those things enter my heart and drown out all the pain.

My family, friends, health-care workers and even strangers, made my human experience extraordinary, they opened my heart for me. And, their hearts were opened at the same time.

Bud was moved by what she said and realized and regretted, how much time he had wasted.

Just then the train pulled into heavens station.

Some souls remained on the train as they were going back to complete their learning.
Bud rose to exit.
“Are you getting off the train? he asked Sunny.
“No I’m going back,” she replied.
“How come?
“To watch over you.”

The end

Toni O’KEEFFE-~🌹❤️

Everyone you meet is a teacher.

Some people come into our lives not because they need us, but because we need them.

Everyone we meet is a teacher.
They may guide us through the storms in our lives, they may be the mirror reflecting the unhealthy attitudes and behaviours we need to let go of, they may shine their light on answers we’ve been looking for, or, they may bring us comfort when we need it most.

When we start to see each other this way (as teachers), perhaps we’ll hold more reverence for the roles we play in each other’s lives, and tread more softly on each other’s hearts.

Watch for the earth angels who arrive to help and guide you. You may not see their wings, but you’ll feel the compassion radiate from their hearts.

Toni O’KEEFFE~🌹❤️
*artwork Ekkawat Ritnetikul

The Train

After 92 years of earthly life, Bud Hart was on the train to heaven, when he met Sunny an energetic little soul who after nine short years of earthly life, was also on the train.

“Wasn’t that the most exciting earthly adventure ever,” she asked, him.

“No, it was too hard. I hope they don’t send me back. They should give us a manual on how to be human.” he stated in a rather cold tone.

“Why would you need a manual?” she asked.

“To figure it all out,” he said.

She giggled. “But you don’t have to figure anything out. You were given everything you needed for this journey.”

“I most certainly was not!” He commanded.

She giggled again. “You silly soul. Everything you needed for your earthly journey was neatly tucked inside your heart. All you had to do was open it.

“How would I know that!”

“You feel it,” Sunny still giggling, replied.

She continued, “Sometimes pain, grief, anger, disappointment or stubbornness, are sitting on the heart making it heavy and hard to open. When we let those toxic emotions go, then, the heart will open. When it does, kindness, compassion, gratitude, love AND self-love flow effortlessly to us and from us and our earthly life can be enjoyed.”

“What if you can’t open your heart, what then smarty pants? Bud asked.

“If the weight is too much to bear alone, then others are sent to help you.”

Bud was taken aback by this little souls wisdom. He knew she was right. He had let years of anger, regret, resentment, pain, disappointment and ego centred thinking, weight him down, blocking his heart energy.

“How come you’re so wise, and why did your journey end at such a tender age.”

“I had the best life. My journey was exactly as long as it was supposed to be.
During my nine years all I knew was kindness, compassion, gratitude, selflessness, and love. I let those things enter my heart and drown out all the pain.

My family, friends, health-care workers and even strangers, made my human experience extraordinary, they opened my heart for me. And, their hearts were opened at the same time.

Bud was moved by what she said and realized and regretted, how much time he had wasted.

Just then the train pulled into heavens station.

Some souls remained on the train as they were going back to complete their learning.
Bud rose to exit.
“Are you getting off the train? he asked Sunny.
“No I’m going back,” she replied.
“How come?
“To watch over you.”

The end

Toni O’KEEFFE-~🌹❤️

There’s power in your pain

Beautiful friend, stop worrying.
Trust that what you’re going through, will lead to something greater.

Our pain does not define us, it helps us grow. Don’t let the heartache, physical pain, disappointment, sorrow or grief, you might be feeling today, be your story. It’s only one page of a larger, more exciting adventure.

Scars are meant to leave us stronger.
They are the badges we wear reminding us to keep moving forward, taking the lessons from our pain with us.

What hurt you yesterday, has already begun to heal today.

Toni O’KEEFFE ~🌹❤️

Trust your power

We don’t have to see air, electricity, gravity, radio waves, atoms and molecules, to know these things exist. We trust their power, we trust they exist.

You don’t have to see the POWER in you,
to know it exists, you just have to TRUST that it exists.

You are more capable, knowledgeable and powerful then the world has led you to believe.

We place too much power in the hands of others by letting them determine who and how, we should be and what our capabilities are.

It doesn’t matter how many times somebody tells a tiny acorn it can’t grow into a strong, towering Oak tree, as soon as the acorn is planted the right conditions, it will prove them all wrong.

You my friend, you are the acorn.
In the right conditions, you can only grow into who you’re meant to be.

You’re one powerful, mighty, unique
and kinda’ magical, little human being.
(or acorn, you choose 😁)

Toni O’KEEFFE ~🌹❤️