Everything you need;
to live your best life,
is in here ❤️
not out there…🌍
Toni O’KEEFFE ~🌹❤️
Your reach is greater than you think
Everything you need;
to live your best life,
is in here ❤️
not out there…🌍
Toni O’KEEFFE ~🌹❤️
From time-to-time many of us feel an emptiness, a lacking or void we think we need to fill in order to be happy.
We exhaust ourselves chasing happiness, chasing love, searching for meaning, chasing more of this or more of that, buying stuff to try and fill the emptiness or the sense of “lacking” in our lives.
Trying to fill this emptiness with material possessions, temporary companionship, drugs, alcohol, and busyness, almost never works. These things might mask what’s going on beneath the surface for a short period of time, but, they rarely lead to sustained fulfillment.
Perhaps this sense of emptiness is not something that needs to be filled, but something that needs to be FELT.
Perhaps this space within the ether of our chaotic human mind, is actually a waiting room that’s meant to be left wide-open, allowing old feelings, attitudes and pain to leave, and new feelings, thoughts and peace to arrive. A space we visit to lance our wounds, release our tears and the stifled ache of pent-up grief, pain, loneliness, remorse or sadness until we understand “it” and find the lesson in “it”. A space to purge the ugliness of what’s hurt us in the past and let “it” go – creating space for new things, new purpose, new meaning, to arrive. A space where we push the darkness out, and let the light in.
When the ache of emptiness or lacking creeps in, rather than trying to fill it, try to feel it. Take a walk, exercise, journal, open up and start talking to someone, go into nature, sit quietly and meditate. It doesn’t matter which path you take to get to this space, what matters is that you arrive, and when you do, you ask your pain what it’s trying to teach you. Then listen, feel, and release the things that no longer serve you or bring you peace. The answer(s) may not come right away. You may need to visit this space several times. When the answers begin to arrive, thank your pain for the lessons, then let it go. As it leaves, visualize new energy, new purpose, new feelings of wellness and hopefulness arrive. Then go out and live this one beautiful life you’ve been given.
This concept may sound abstract, however, if you’ve been feeling the ache of emptiness within, and what you’ve been doing to fill the void has not been working, what have you got to lose? other than the ache of the emptiness that haunts you.
Perhaps not all empty spaces are meant to be filled, perhaps they’re meant to be felt.
When life knocks you down,
stay there for awhile.
Catch your breath,
rest, look up at the sky,
gaze at the clouds,
the birds, the stars,
the moon, whatever’s
up there, and know,
this thing that knocked
you down, is only a
lesson along a path that
leads to something better.
What happens to us,
who we are. So rest.
When you’re ready,
carry on knowing
this lesson is now
Toni O’KEEFFE ~🌹❤️
After every life storm, look for what’s left behind.
Don’t dismiss the experiences or relationships you’ve had with anyone who’s come in-and-out of your life. Even if these relationships or experiences were brief or messy, they contained messages, learning, gems of wisdom and personal growth meant just for you.
Sometimes the greatest treasure is found amongst the rubble.
Toni O’KEEFFE ~ 🌹❤️
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.
*artwork Ekkawat Ritnetikul
Once upon a time there was a boy named Woo.
Woo pondered the concept of “light.”
He had heard terms such as:
“He lit the way for others.”
“She was a beckon of light.”
“He lit up the room.”
“She was glowing.”
Woo did not understand these terms.
He only knew light as the warmth and glow radiating from the sun or the light from a candle.
He was perplexed has he contemplated how a person could be “light.”
So, Woo asked his mother; “Mother, how does a man light the way for others.”
“You will know when someone lights your path and leads you out of the darkness,” she replied.
He asked his grandfather; “Grandfather, how does a woman become a beckon of light?”
“You will know when your mind is awakened and inspired by the wisdom and knowledge of your teachers,” replied his grandfather.
He asked the village healer; “How can a person glow or radiate light?
The healer replied, “You will know when you observe a mother holding her child for the very first time.
All the replies Woo received were different. He still did not understand, so he wandered to the river to sit and contemplate what he’d been told.
Woo saw a disheveled, homeless man sitting next to the River.
“Why do you live like this, alone and without a home?” Woo asked the man?
“What makes you think I’m alone and without a home?” ask the man. “The earth is my home. I’m surrounded by the beauty and light of the world, I’m not alone at all.
The response from the man surprised Woo. “What is the light of the world?” Woo asked.
The man replied “You will know when you witness the smallest act of kindness and your heart is touched. You will know when you no longer judge others for the way they look, think or live, but rather seek to accept and love those who share your path, because you understand we are all apart of a greater light.
“I don’t understand,” said Woo.
“Close your eyes and tell me what you hear?” asked the man.
Woo closed his eyes and listened.
“I hear the powerful rush of the river,” said Woo.
“What created the river?” asked the man.
“Many drops of rain falling from the sky.” Woo replied.
“That’s correct,” said the man. “One raindrop can not force a river downstream but together the droplets are powerful.”
The man then asked Woo to look into the sky. Woo did as he was asked.
“What do you see?” asked the man.
“I see stars lighting up the sky,” said Woo.
“That’s correct, said the man. “One star alone cannot light the sky, but many stars together with the moon can create a path that guides ships and weary sailors home.
“Now, touch the ground.”
Woo placed his hands on the ground.
“What do you feel? asked the man.
“Many blades of grass,” said Woo.
“That’s right,” said the man. “The ground is solid. It holds back the river and helps the river stay it’s course. All those tiny blades of grass with their roots intertwined, are a part of the solid foundation which guides the river to the sea where it meets other rivers and together they fill the Ocean.”
At that moment, “a light” went on in Woo’s head. “I think I understand!” Woo exclaimed. “Everything is connected. Each of us is like one small star, one droplet of rain or one blade of grass.“
“Yes,” said the man.
“Each star, each rain drop, each blade of grass and each one of us shine, grow or flow in different directions. However, when we work together we create something stronger, brighter, better, and more powerful.
We shine our light when we share our courage, strength, wisdom, acts kindness or love with others. We don’t all shine the same. But, we all shine.”
Woo now understood.
“Thank you,” said Woo, for shining your light on my path.”
“And, yours onto mine,” replied the man.
Life became easier when I surrendered my own tenacity and began to live with an open heart and an open mind.
There are things I’ve discovered and learned along the way, which I might never have unearthed if I had remained locked in my own stubbornness.
Our struggles often result from our inability to see the possibilities beyond our own thinking and the doctrines imposed on us.
Living with an open heart and mind means considering alternatives, actively listening to opinions different from our own, being kind before jumping to judgment and being aware of signs along the way pointing you in new directions.
Open minds and open hearts, have created more music, magic, poetry, peace, love and light in the world, then closed minds and cold hearts.
A moment will arrive when you realize it’s time to tread beyond your comfort zone.
In this moment you will know with great clarity, it’s time to allow the things that have been calling you from beyond the veil of fear, doubt and judgment, to be born.
This will be your moment of grace, your moment to shine and shatter the obstacles that have been blocking your path.
The fear may appear larger than it ever has because its standing right in front of you. Still, you will face it, naked in your authenticity, showing the world who you really are and not who they have forced you to be.
The demons will retreat, the fog will lift and you will clearly see the path towards the things you’ve always wanted to do, see, say, and become.
Be brave, muster your courage and set out to do all thats been calling you for so long.
We never know exactly when our journey here will end, but we know it will end. Let this year be the year you leap into the life that’s meant for you.
It’s time to ALLOW yourself to be.
To stop fighting the voices of criticism and finally be comfortable just ~ being ~ you.
Toni O’Keeffe ~🌹❤️
There is light within this messy, tangled, unconditioned 2020 tunnel we’re passing through.
You’ll find this light shining in the words, the wisdom, the hands, the acts of kindness and the hearts that capture your attention and hold you. Surrender, and let them hold you.
If you need to let your tears fall, let them fall. Let your tears take the the pain, fatigue, confusion and disappointment with them.
We will emerge from this year kinder, wiser and into better brighter days. Until then, find and hold on to the light that comforts you and provides you with shelter from the heaviness of this downpour,
The light and the warmth it brings always, without fail, returns☀️.
Toni O’K~ 🌹 ❤️
For Jackie K
By Toni O’Keeffe
October 19, 2020
When I seek answers, I retreat into the sanctuary of my thoughts. The route I take is often along a soft earthy path that leads me into the woods.
Once I enter the sanctum and stillness of the forest, the smell of autumn rain upon fallen leaves and moss-covered logs, fill my entire being with peace. My breathing slows and my steps soften.
Tall cedar and fir defenders having stood for hundreds of years, blanket me from the wind and shield me from the noise of the outside world.
Now I’m free to dream, to let my inner child loose and allow her to run free with the magic of her imagination.
Mushroom caps become hovels to small gnome like creatures, dragonflies and other winged insects transform to become fairies and elves dancing on tree branches, sprinkling dew drops on to the tips of the forest foliage below.
Rays of light stream in between lush fern, foxgloves and trillium petals creating the highway pixies, brownies and imps tiptoe upon as they move through the woodlands.
The hidden faces within giant boulders protecting the river bank, emerge and keep watch over all living things that come to sit and heal by the water’s edge.
As my inner child explores the forest and creates her own magic, my mind rests, my body heals and my spirit connects to her highest self and then, the answers come.
Most of our lives we’re busy moving fast and making noise. Allow yourself to stop, to walk quietly on the earth and trust the voice rising out of the stillness. This is the voice of your soul gifting you with the wisdom you seek.
If you’re struggling, seeking answers or want to spend time with your “real” self, go to forest, exhale and take a walk in the woods.