05 August 2014

Introducing: Be Unleashed

Good morning beauties!

Welcome to Be Unleashed! As you can see, I revamped my blog and gave it a new name. Over the past month, I felt called to rethink the intentions behind this creative space and what I want it to evoke in myself and others. Since I started this blog over 3 and a half years ago, a lot has shifted in my life. Therefore, the focus and purpose behind my writing has also evolved. It's interesting to read some of my first entries. It wasn't until I backtracked to the very beginning that I remembered why I started this blog. I was taking a Stress Management class in my last semester at USC, and the journaling homework assignments felt like such a release that I wanted to share the prompts and my responses with others. Given the kinds of things I wrote about, such as the inclination to please others and my struggle to release worries about the future, I now recognize that this blog marks the true beginning of my path towards self-love and self-awareness. College was coming to a close, and I was called to reflect on how I had spent my time and energy over the past 4 years. I was just getting into a new relationship that surfaced many of my insecurities and desires around love. I recently had been introduced to Bikram yoga, which is an incredibly confrontational practice, both physically and mentally. Transitioning from being a student (the thing I had most identified with for the past 18 years) to an employee and an independent adult was upon me. It was the perfect whirlwind time in my life to crack my heart and my mind wide open to explore all of the thoughts and emotions swimming around in there. Hence, BE LOVE. was born.

It served me well. From breakups and breakdowns to breakthroughs, BE LOVE. really was a safe space for me to feel expressed and to actively practice self-awareness. It was truly a portal for my personal transformation. I would set out to write about a particular topic, and then come out the other end of a stream-of-consciousness entry with a completely unexpected set of realizations. The intention behind BE LOVE. was to learn how to be love, in order to give it freely and receive it; however, I took away so much more than a log line could have ever captured. 

As I've grown and learned over the last couple of years, embodying love is something that has come easier to me than it did before. I have learned to love people where they are, for who they are. I have practiced listening through a loving ear, with compassion and empathy. I have started to understand what it means to love every experience just as it is – without any regrets or “should haves.” I have been more open to being vulnerable enough to give and receive all kinds of love from/to all different kinds of people. For a long time, it was the inability to love myself and others unconditionally that held me back from evolution and transformation. But during and following my trip to Nicaragua, I experienced some of my biggest breakthroughs in regards to love (read here)

After being home for over a month now, I recognize that those revelations were possible because I was free of fear. What is fear? It’s an “unpleasant emotion caused by the belief that someone or something is dangerous, likely to cause pain, or a threat.” (Heavy emphasis on the BELIEF part, folks.) In Nicaragua, I confronted my fears head-on and felt like a superhero version of myself. I became very aware of what my fears are and how they hold me back in all aspect of my life, deterring me from connection, exploration, learning, and growth. My fears are all over the map -- The fear of being rejected by that person of interest. The fear of trying a new food. The fear of saying no and setting boundaries. The fear of being without financial security. The fear of straying from my diet and exercise regime. The fear of being judged for being myself. The fear of hurting someone's feelings. The fear of admitting I have changed my mind. The fear of failure and starting over. It’s pervasive!  And while there is an undeniable link between fear and love (one cannot exist in the presence of the other), I felt drawn to redefine my blog as a place that I will be blasting through fear, which often involves a combination of me showering everything and everyone with love and establishing trust with myself and the Universe. Nicaragua was the birthing place for this new fear-blasting perspective, and it really came into focus on my flight home.

On the plane ride back, something beautiful and heart-wrenching happened. Sitting in my chair in first class, balling my eyes out, agonizing over the transition back to LA living, scribbling in my journal until my hand cramped up... a flip book of memories began to play. A series of small moments flashed before my eyes, from all different points in my life. It was like the final scene in a romance film, when they play a montage of memories that has led the lovers to this point and you suddenly feel overwhelmed and deeply sentimental about the journey they have been on together. It feels like you are truly seeing them for the first time. That's exactly how I felt. It was as if I was having an out-of-body experience, seeing myself from a higher place, observing myself objectively and with love. I saw all the places this person had been, from the 6 year old girl who would sneakily sleep on the floor next to her mom's bed after a nightmare, to the happy little girl who loved to sing at her grandma's Christmas parties, to the elementary school student who wanted to be the teacher's favorite, to the insecure middle-schooler who imagined all eyes on her as she walked down the hall, to the teenager who felt on top of the world when she turned in a book report, to the college student who was so deeply committed to discovering her calling, to the girlfriend who wanted more than her relationship could offer, to the novice traveler who trusted herself and the ocean enough to hop up on a surfboard... It all suddenly showed up in a flash. This poor little girl, I thought. This beautiful woman. This hard-working, determined soul. This resilient, yet sensitive human being. This person who 
so desperately wants to be free. Free from where she's been and trusting of wherever she's going. Free to live in the moment and love as hard as possible, without thinking about what loss may feel like.

In those few, pivotal moments, the intention behind Be Unleashed solidified. These thoughts were not completely new to me, but the person having them was. The seed was planted on my flight over to Nicaragua, when I captured some free-flowing thoughts about the things I wanted to get out of my experience. Reading this set of intentions after my trip, I recognize that this expression of my deepest wishes for my trip is actually a microcosm for what I want for my entire existence – something to apply to the whole landscape of my life, wherever I go and whomever or whatever I encounter.

I wrote:
I would like to center on going deep within myself. I’d like to learn more about what it means to be unleashed and deeply self-aware. I want to recognize any programming or background tracks that play out in my life – both the productive and the limiting ones. I’d like to clear out any resistance I have to being vulnerable, so that I can become more comfortable allowing myself to be seen and heard, and so that I can form deep, meaningful connections with others. I want to know and love myself so well, that I am open and eager to know and love others. I want to practice pure compassion and empathy for myself and others. And I am also open to challenging myself in ways that I may be playing the victim, excusing, or limiting myself. I want to tap into my strong, innate superpower and learn how to harness and release it. I want to feel alive, energetic, and charged in my own skin, and I want to share that electricity with others. I want to be wide awake and aware, and I want to be an inspiration to others, such that they want to be cracked wide open to experience their own inner magic. I want to be inspired and be inspiring. I believe that this is my path – my personal legend. I believe that this is the way to true love – love of oneself, love of others, and the best way to bring new people to love into my life. My mantra: I am a bright light bursting with love and excitement for this life I am blessed to lead.
This pre-journal captured the essence of what it means for me to Be Unleashed. My time in Nicaragua gave me a taste of what it feels like to live Unleashed. And the mental flip book that I experienced on my way back to LA was the first step towards thinking Unleashed. I will be using my newly defined blog space to continue learning and sharing what it means to be totally free and open. Free to be and to love. Open to learning, feeling, and experiencing. Free to fall on my ass and to fall in love. Open to being seen and to being hurt. Free to be caught off guard and surprised, and open to a new way of observing and existing in this world. Whatever living Unleashed looks like for you, I hope that you will join me in suiting up in some superhero spandex of your own!

Thank you for reading about my new intention. I adore any and all feedback I get, from your own thoughts on the topic to the experiences you've had that can relate and inform. Please share if you feel so inclined! Unleash your heart and mind in the comment section below. 

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