Wednesday, October 23, 2013

Sacred Space

I love walking in the woods near our cabin in Idaho. There's a fairly steep hill to climb to reach the forest, so I'm breathing heavily when I get there.

 The tall lodge pole pines wave their spindly heads in the breeze far above me. I know they are whispering blessings from heaven.

 I walk through the soft mountain grass and enjoy the profusion of yellow daisies and mountain violets growing amidst the green.

An errant Jay flits from tree to tree, chased by a chattering squirrel. The fresh pine scent fills the air. Silence sifts among the forest sounds. I look for huckle berries on the north slope as I walk. I pluck the savory fruit here and there, and enjoy the sweetness in my mouth. Small white butterflies flit from bush to bush. I am at peace.
I have been there so often, I can go there in my mind any time I want. During busy days I take a break to spend a few minutes there. I love the forest. It's a place for me to center myself and let go of the hurry of life.

Escape from the tensions of the day.

Your sacred space is where you can find yourself again and again. Joseph Campbell

Create your own sacred space.
1.         Choose some place you love to be.
2.         Picture your surroundings in your mind.
3.         Feel the breeze. Is it sunny or cloudy?
4.         Listen for the sounds.
5.         Smell the air around you. Are there other smells?
6.         Touch the earth beneath your feet. Feel your environment.
7.         Experience the tastes around you.

The more you place yourself in your location, the greater the relaxation you'll experience.

Do you have a sacred space? Let it fill you with light. Let it center you.

Monday, October 21, 2013

What's Coming Up Next

This post is part of a blog tour, and I've been asked to share what I'm working on.

My goal in writing is to make a difference in the world. I love the concept of adding light and goodness to life. That is my driving force--long term and short term.

I'm just beginning to edit a book I've written on Family Councils. I'm excited about this work because there is really nothing out there to help parents and family work together to communicate in a more timely manner. Many factors make parenting harder now than ever before. Single moms and dads have a difficult task ahead of them, rearing children alone. Communication is vital if things are to run smoothly. In many two-parent families, both mom and dad are working, making it hard to come home to parent after a long day out of the home. Sometimes kids are just baffling. I share secrets of how to see what's going on in their heads.

I address all these issues in my new book to be out in 2014. Here is a possible book cover.

I love writing self help books. It's wonderful to receive notes from readers saying that my books have made a difference in their lives.

I try to write every morning. I'm an early-in-the-day person. By night my brain is fried.

Here are the covers of my two new books just out.

Love, Hugs and Hope is a book to help children and parents through difficult times in a child's life. It is designed to show kids how to release their feelings and reframe problems in a positive way in their lives.

Becoming Free is a guide to help all of us become the best we can be. It begins with goal setting chapters--both long and short term goals. The next section looks at mistaken childhood beliefs that plague us all at times. Then comes communication skills, and finally I discuss all the theraputic techniques I used my my counseling practice to aid us in positive thinking and peaceful living.

Next Monday look for a peek into Margot Hovley's new novel to be published by Covenant, and Chris Miller's latest work. I love their writing and highly recommend their books.

Saturday, October 19, 2013

Finding Joy In Your Pain

My dear sweet mother passed away this past week at age 94 after a long battle with cancer. It was a bitter sweet moment for me. Part of me rejoiced because death freed her from a crippled aged body. Sadness also washed over me, knowing she wouldn't be there to visit with each day.

Then the whirlwind began with family driving and flying in from distant places. We had the burial to plan, a memorial program to put together, meals to organize, beds to make, and on and on.

Now the family is gone, and I have some time to grieve. Can I find joy in my grief? 

Oh yes. Joy comes with the happy memories.
Joy in discussing each day's events with my mom.
Joy in rubbing her face with lotion each night.
Joy in spooning ice chips into her mouth.

Joy in watching her reminisce with elderly colleagues. 

Joy in seeing her hold her great grandchildren.

Joy in reading her scriptures daily.

Joy in our good night kiss and our 'I love you's.' 

I will have sad days and happy ones. But underneath it all is my joy because of her love for me.  
Find a place inside where there's joy, and the joy will burn out the pain. Joseph Campbell

Wednesday, October 16, 2013

Contest Winner

Kat is our winner. I'll mail Becoming Free tomorrow.
My mother just passed away this week. She was a widow for 65 years. I know the path you are walking. My love and prayers are with you for your life to be filled with blessings.
Congratulations, Christy

Thursday, October 3, 2013

Create Your Own Inner Beauty - Blog Hop

To win a book in the LDS Blog Hop, leave a comment saying how you create peace and inner beauty in your life. Designate which book your want to win: Love, Hugs, and Hope or Becoming Free.

We have a cabin near the Grand Tetons in Idaho, and we spent a few days there this past week. The weather was rainy and cold. Snow covered the mountain tops. The chill of winter was in the air.
Our granddaughters had just watched The Sound of Music, and loved singing the songs and pretending that they were Maria.

I looked out the window one dismal afternoon, while mopping the floor, and noticed them twirling in the harvested wheat field, singing, "The hills are alive with the sound of music." Now I have a pretty good imagination, but there was no Swiss mountain meadow grass out there. There was only the wheat stubble, and it wasn't soft and green, it was stiff and prickly. There was no sunny bright sky. The chilly fall day was overcast and rainy.
The children didn't care about any of that. They were singing their hearts out and enjoying themselves.

The pursuit of truth and beauty is a sphere of activity in which we are permitted to remain children all our lives. Albert Einstein.
Sometimes we get bogged down in the reality of the moment, as I did that rainy day, only seeing the negative. Do you find yourself feeling rushed, over worked and full of anxiety about getting your 'to do' list completed? When I find myself in that state of mind, I begin to snap at people--usually the people I love the most. I don't like that exhausted, burned out, irritable feeling.
Take a mental break for a moment and fill your mind with beauty. Enjoy a "Sound of Music" interlude in your busy day. I put down my mop, sat on the step watching them, and let their view of the day seep into my own life.
1.         Look for the beauty around you.
2.         Compose your own splendor from within as our granddaughters did.
3.         Visualize being in your favorite place.
4.         Breathe deeply and fill yourself with light.
In just a moment you have created your own inner beauty--your own mini vacation, if you will. Can you feel yourself more relaxed? More peaceful? More positive?
I can.
Enjoy your own inner beauty.
Let us live for the beauty of our own reality. Charles Lamb

Christy Monson's book, Love Hugs and Hope is available at:

Becoming Free can be purchased: