what to do when you feel like you’re not doing enough

what to do when you feel like you’re not doing enough

little girl and little boy running barefoot in grass

As I’m writing this, it’s the day before our son Miles’ 5th birthday, which is a day I remember not only as his entry into the world but also as my initiation into motherhood.

I don’t often share this, but I wasn’t one of those little girls who played with baby dolls as I dreamt of becoming a mother.

I was more prone to playing entrepreneur (charging my cousin to eat at our house at my “Pig Out” Cafe), trying my hand at activism (starting my own chapter of Kids for Saving Earth when I was still in elementary school), and making plans to own my own home with a lush backyard full of trees (growing up surrounded by nature in Oklahoma set the stage for this one).

So when I met the man who would later become my husband, a family man through and through, I thought that I had to choose between continuing down the path I had envisioned when I was little OR choose this new path, with diapers and parenting classes and room parent responsibilities as my sole focus.

What I didn’t realize at the time was that there was another path; one that allowed for the diapers AND my clients, the parenting classes AND speaking out for the causes that are important to me, the responsibilities to schools AND taking care of our home.

Full transparency: making this choice to create space for the both/and in my life isn’t always an easy one, and I have had more moments than I care to admit when I feel like I’m not doing any of it well, for my family OR for my career.

But if there’s one thing I’ve learned from juggling these responsibilities in my life (and from guiding many of my clients to do the same), it’s that beating myself up has never helped things; it only serves to keep us stuck and frankly, pretty miserable.

When our minds get fixated on all that we haven’t accomplished, how we’re handling things wrong, or what isn’t working in our lives, we quite literally don’t have the headspace for the magic that is always there.

On the other hand, when we stop to slow down and become a little more gentle with ourselves, we bring in an expansiveness to our energy that creates space to not only soothe our weary souls, but that also invites in creative solutions we might not have seen before.

Have you paid attention to the energy that was under the choices and actions you’ve taken in your life lately?

If not, I invite you to take a little time to do that today; soften your mind and bring a little more gentleness to your experience and notice how it shifts the choices you make for yourself and toward creating change in this world.

You are not alone…there is always love waiting for you in the stillness.

Believing in the power of you,

Sabrina

P.S.

In case you missed it, or if you’ve made the conscious choice to step back from social media (a choice I support 100%, by the way!), I led a quick 4 minute guided HypnoReiki meditation in this week’s IGTV; you can watch it here, no Instagram account needed:

Click here for a 4 minute shot of HypnoReiki to soothe your mind and body

P.P.S.

This inspiring talk by Elizabeth Gilbert on Facing Fear with Compassion couldn’t be more timely and was a salve for my soul; listen to it by clicking here.

When you want to distract yourself from your pain, try this instead

When you want to distract yourself from your pain, try this instead

Surrender

When life comes at us hard, we often feel like we have 2 choices: face it head on or check completely out, succumbing to distraction to avoid the pain.

What if there were a middle ground?

What if we could slow time enough so that we can process the pain with a little more gentleness, a little more compassion?

This middle road is the one less traveled; I would say that the vast majority of us opt to distract (myself included!), usually as an unconscious “protection” based on the belief that we can’t handle the intensity of the world as it appears to be.

To clarify, I don’t believe distracting is the same as consciously taking breaks from immersing yourself in the heaviness of it all.

I believe checking out from the news, the media, or even the experiences of your friends and community is important to manage your own energy.

And I also believe that an hour or two of Netflix, a podcast on a topic you love, or immersing yourself in a book are all ways that you can still take a break without fully giving in to the ego’s desire to distract and numb.

The distraction I’m referring to is the one that bypasses your feelings so that you’re either so immersed in the energy of the collective that you aren’t sure how you really feel or you’re so checked out from your own energy that you don’t recognize your pain until it starts seeping through in not-so-helpful ways.

If you have found yourself choosing distraction, I invite you to set your phone to Do Not Disturb, shut your door, and give yourself 5 minutes to touch the pain inside while recognizing your amazing innate ability to “be with what is” no matter how quickly the world is changing around you:  

I would love to hear from you:

What feels real for you now? Is there fear or pain that you’ve been avoiding, simmering under the surface? How can you recognize the impermanence of even that feeling, no matter how deep or intense it might be?

You are so much stronger than you might realize…trust yourself, and when that fails, trust the Universe is still here to support you through it all.

Sending big love as we navigate this together,

Sabrina

P.S.

If you need deeper support to move through heavy emotions so that you can tap into your inner resilience, I invite you to book a “Get Calm” mini session with me today. Details can be found at http://sabrinabolin.com/getcalm.

How to Avoid the Happiness Trap and the Negativity Bias

How to Avoid the Happiness Trap and the Negativity Bias

Everything is Going to Be Alright Or Is It

I believe there is a shadow side to personal growth: it’s our addiction to happiness (or peace or wellbeing or…well, you name it).

In fact, when we embark upon a healing journey, we often create an unspoken expectation that everything will be on the “up and up” from here on out.

But to be human is to acknowledge both the joys and the pains of life, the light and the dark.

And that means, sometimes, we break down and cry (yep, just today).

We rage (ah yes, today as well).

We might even hurt the people we love (unfortunately that was also part of my day).

However, if we are truly being present, we don’t remain there; everything is impermanent.

Our consciousness gives us the opportunity to cycle back to our higher truth, even after honoring the not-so-pretty parts of ourselves.

On the flipside, our brains are wired to seek out danger; we have a negativity bias in place that makes it more challenging to see the good once we get into that dark place.

So how can we embrace both the joys and challenges of our day to day lives, without falling into the trap of becoming addicted to one or the other?

Click play on the video below for one simple process to honor the joys and challenges (without falling into the happiness trap or negativity bias):

I would love to hear from you:

Where is your deep need for “everything to be alright” keeping you from honoring the fullness of your life experience?

More importantly, where can you bring compassion to your experience to fully accept those moments so that the energy can move through you instead of get stuck in you?

Once you begin to consistently honor all the ways energy wants to move through you, you’ll feel more clear to hear that inner wisdom in all of its voices.

With love to support you through the ups AND downs,

Sabrina

P.S.

Curious about hypnosis? Go behind the scenes with my process as I guide Stas of Think Clever through a short trance during our podcast interview – click here to listen!

P.P.S.

Today’s message was a sneak peek of episode 6 of my weekly IGTV show “Soul Aligned w/Sabrina.” If it resonated, I invite you to click the below to join me on Instagram and get notified as soon as each new episode goes live in my feed:

@thesabrinabolin

How to release guilt (and other stuck emotions!)

How to release guilt (and other stuck emotions!)

Sabrina Bolin and Dad spending a moment together

Guilt…ooo boy, it’s a doozy.

Merriam-Webster lists a few definitions for it, but the one I’m talking about is this:

feelings of deserving blame especially for imagined offenses or from a sense of inadequacy

As a mother to a nearly 4 year old child and caretaker to a nearly 80 year old father, I know guilt all too well; it’s that nagging feeling that I should be to blame for not being and doing enough.

However I believe that guilt in and of itself, like all emotions, isn’t bad per se; it serves a purpose by pointing to where I need to look a little more closely at how I’m internally processing messages from the millions bits of information that my unconscious has absorbed over time.

Recognizing that emotions are simply signaling us to notice something deeper about our experience is the key to understanding how to navigate this oft-messy life. ?

That being said, sometimes ego doesn’t want to let go, even after that lesson is learned, so that energy gets stuck, attaching itself to an old story or pattern on repeat.

In today’s video, I take you through a process that will help you release guilt and get unstuck from any unhelpful emotion that you no longer need.

Ready to shift your energy? Click play to learn how to release those stuck emotions in your life:

After playing along, I would love to hear from you! What message did your unconscious share to help you integrate and release the stuck emotions you’ve been carrying?

As always, with love,

Sabrina

Sometimes life gets messy.

Sometimes life gets messy.

Baby M in the NICU

When asked how I’m doing by friends who haven’t heard from me in awhile, I often say that I’m finally emerging from my cave…because for me, that was what the first few years of motherhood felt like.

I had read all of the books; my ego told me “I should have been prepared.”

But that isn’t how life works sometimes. Sometimes, the best preparation is simply practicing presence and surrender so that when sh*t gets messy, there is something deep inside that keeps you going.

Although I’m not ready to share all of the details yet, I will share that the unimaginable happened after my son was born and he spent his first couple of months in the NICU instead of with us at home.

It taught me that I have a lioness inside willing to fight for my child when the need arose, and I shifted to a more primal existence, one where survival ranked high and being seen and heard didn’t even show up in my awareness (or if it did, it was small and subtle, in dreams and passing moments).

Being in a cave was also a beautiful thing in that living in the present moment was necessary for survival; I couldn’t fathom thinking of what the next 5 years would look like when I could only see what the day ahead would bring.

I’m so grateful to share that despite a rough start, our son is thriving, and I equally thank the angels, my ancestors, and every single doctor, nurse and therapist who was a part of his healing process along the way.

Over the past several months, I’ve been hearing those whispers from my intuition again, the ones that invite me back into the light to radiate not only the messages I felt called to share before, but also to share a new one:

the world needs more powerful compassion for ALL of it, both the beauty AND the mess

Because life IS messy sometimes, and sometimes that mess can overwhelm us. And then we beat ourselves up for not “taking care of our mess,” but the reality is that when we’re in that space is when we need love most of all.

And so, here I am, emerging from my cave after learning to dance more gracefully with my shadows and those messy parts of myself I refused to look at before.

I’ve recommitted to the practices that changed my relationship to my own energy in the past and followed my intuition as I felt called to create something new.

And, in a classic “the Universe has a sense of humor” moment, the entire process was rife with mess.

The evening was planned out, our child was in bed, my partner in the director’s seat, and I was in my flow…only to discover after over 2 hours of filming that the sound was unusable.

And so I recognized the mess, gave myself just a moment to sit in it, then cleaned back up and went at it again.

The next planned evening was brutally hot, but I was determined to get the right lighting, so I set up the tripod outside and bought one of those cheap remote controls for my iphone camera so that I could coordinate the takes by myself while my partner stayed inside to keep an eye on our son.

Again, I was in my flow…until back to back airplanes flew right over the house for several minutes in a row.

So I sat in the mess, blotted the sweat from my face, and kept going.

Again, and again, and again, until finally I had filmed enough takes to *hopefully* ensure there would be something usable in editing.

And then, it all just seemed to click together.

The lighting worked, the sound worked, but most importantly, my message was strong and clear.

I share this with you to remind you that there is often a mess behind every finished product that is presented to you…but the fact that it is in front of you now means that someone, somewhere, saw that mess and worked through it anyway.

Messy journey and all, I am excited to share my finished product with you because I truly believe in the power of these processes.

It’s a 3 day video mini course called Chaos to Calm, and in it I teach 3 insightful tools from the world of hypnosis that will shift your energy, no matter what’s going on in the world around you.

You can access the course here – my gift to you, absolutely free:

Click here for the Chaos to Calm Mini Course

Because no matter how messy it all seems, we are the ones who choose how long we want to sit in it and when we’re ready to clean it all up and create something beautiful.

With big, big love,

Sabrina

When Life Takes Unexpected Detours

When Life Takes Unexpected Detours

When Life Takes Unexpected Detours

“A truly happy per­son is one who can enjoy the scenery on a detour.” ~ Anonymous

I’ve just returned from an amazing trip back in Oklahoma, spending time with my friends and family, and reconnecting to my roots.

Of course, as is often the case with travel and intense family time, my ego ran into several challenges to shake my foundation, giving my intuition an opportunity to step in and steer the ship.

The first lesson came before I even arrived, as mechanical issues with my connecting flight from LAX set into motion a missed flight and surprise overnight in Denver.

My first reaction? I’m not proud to admit that it was “righteous” anger. “I mean, really, how dare they ruin my trip???”

Fortunately the work I do to catch my ego in its tracks paid off, and I was able to quickly re-route the track it was heading down; striking a balance between action and surrender, I was able to receive the gift the Universe was sending me.

Here’s how I struck that balance and how you can stay grounded when life takes unexpected detours.

1. I brought awareness to my energy.

Everything is energy, and everything flows more smoothly when I’m intimately aware of the state of the energy that is working through and around me.

When I found out the flight had been cancelled, my energy got muddled. Only moments before, I had been sitting at an airport cafe, enjoying a cup of herbal tea and cookie, while telling stories and laughing with my man.

How often do catch ourselves wondering why we feel off, not realizing until after the fact that some event has thrown our energy way off balance?

To reduce the “shock to your system,” I recommend pausing throughout your day to get real and get clear about how your energy is flowing, so that when an event or circumstance does upset it, you can take steps more quickly to get realigned.

2. I owned my choices.

Awareness leads to choice – was I going to stay stuck, wasting my own precious energy or choose to ground myself in what is?

Fortunately for me (and those around me), I chose to ground myself by slowing down and refusing to give into the panic.

It’s cliche because it works…take that one deep breath, even if (and especially if) you “don’t have the time.”

3. I made space to appreciate the magic.

Not only did I ground myself, but I also chose to consciously experience the magic in that moment.

You see, right there in the terminal, among the chaos of travelers, a tiny bird had flown in from outside and was flitting from table to water fountain to the top of signs and back again.

For me, the vision of birds opens up feelings of freedom and a release of worry, and this sweet little Spirit was no exception.

 

Click to tweet!Click to tweet>> The Universe is always sending us gifts; it is up to us to open our eyes to see and hearts to receive. <<Click to tweet

4. I infused action with kindness.

While waiting in line to speak with a customer service agent, the murmurs and grumbling were hard to ignore. But instead of judging their choices, I took it all in with compassion.

Yes, frustration can feel all too real…I run into it all the time. So I respected their feelings while staying mindful to not absorb their energy.

Maintaining our own energy in a loving space becomes quite a bit more challenging when it feels like everyone else is on a completely different page.

Try this: the next time you are feeling “energetically sensitive,” zip up your energy by pulling up an imaginary zipper from in front of your feet to above your head. It might sound silly but it sends a quick and direct message to your subconscious to keep your energy in and others out.

When I stepped up to the counter, I started with gratitude and thanked the agent in advance for her help. I kept the conversation pleasant, but I didn’t settle until I felt we had found a good solution.

Are you currently dealing with a problem in your life where this might apply? Can you envision how much more empowered and connected you’ll feel when you focus on what’s in your control – your own energy – and affect change from a space of kindness instead of anger or force?

5. I let go and enjoyed the ride.

At the end of the day, my travel plans changed, but I didn’t meditate in a corner wishing for a new flight to appear.

I took action…but then I let go.

And I’m so glad I did.

As it turned out, my man just happens to have a good friend who lives in Denver, and who just happened to be available that evening. We were whisked off to a great evening laughing, playing Nintendo, and catching up before we got a great night of sleep and lovely brunch before resuming our trip.

As always, the Universe had something even better in store for me; perhaps you’ll find that it does for you too.

I’d love to hear from you: How can you apply the lessons I learned to a circumstance in your life, where unexpected detours seem to be leading you off track?