Dear Genie #7

home page box dear genie


Today’s advice blog features two letters that deal with stressful relationship situations.  They are vastly different scenarios, but equally touching stories from two people who want to be the best they can be for the other person in the relationship.  Each response also includes a holistic approach to solutions and healing by addressing physical, mental, and emotional concerns of each submission.  


Have a question you’d like to ask?  

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Letter #1
Nan writes:

Dear Genie,

I’m helping to care for my Mom after surgery. She is 81 years old and I am nearly 60 years old. I’m getting tired (it’s turned into 4+ months and a subsequent fall) and I wonder how to keep my energy level up and positive while dealing with quite a bit of negativity. Is there a way to shield myself in this situation? I’m open to any suggestions.

Thanks, Nan

 

Dear Nan,

Love to you Nan for stepping up for your mom!  Most often we see elderly parents left to be cared for by strangers when they are this age and needing constant care.  It is not easy to care for someone so ill and dependent on others – nor is it easy to be the person in that condition.  You are a blessing and a light-bearer, my friend.  Feel that in your heart because it is so very true!

That doesn’t mean that you don’t require rest and relief from the stress.  You cannot pour from an empty cup.  You’ve got to take care of yourself first – physically, mentally and emotionally!

I’m going to give you some ideas for each of those areas that I think may help you stay balanced and fully equipped to be a caregiver for you mom.

Physical Support:

Eat well and hydrate.  Real and fresh food as much as possible and lots of water.   (*add some lemon to your water for a pick me up!)

Rest efficiently.  Rest isn’t just sleeping – it is also doing a relaxing activity that calms your mind while your body rests comfortably (puzzles, knitting, meditation, Reiki, reading…) Take breaks from chores and care-giving to allow yourself a break to rest.

Try to get organized the best you can for the situation.  Setting a schedule for meals, baths, entertainment, and exercise with your mom will help you schedule in the rest periods for yourself.

Time off is vital.  You’ve got to go out and live your passions and your life – even if just once a week for a couple hours.

 

Mental Support:

Talk to friends or other caregivers who understand and can offer support.  (Not just for complaining though – reach out to those who can offer compassion, understanding and ideas to support your self-care and your job as a caregiver.)

Try a supplement or herbal tea to help with mental clarity and focus.  Ginseng is the best!

Orange, peppermint and lemon scents are energizing both physically and mentally.  You can add these scents to your life with candles, essential oils, cooking, lotions, etc.  (Peppermint can be an irritant on the lungs – so make sure it won’t bother your mom)

 

Emotional/Spiritual Support:

Journaling is a great way to get out emotions in a safe way that is not reactionary.  This allows you to vent without your mom being on the receiving end.

Add some gratitude work with the journal – find a few things each day to be grateful for as your mom’s caregiver.  This will encourage you to seek out those moments each day.

Get grounded. Walks in nature, planting flowers with the spring, or other grounding activities are helpful.

Give yourself the love and appreciation you may not being getting from your “patient” or others who aren’t the caregiver.  (I put “patient” in quotes because it is helpful to think of your mom that way so you don’t take any harsh words from her personally as she recovers.)

Keep listening to your inner voice.  She won’t steer you wrong.  Ask the question and listen for her guidance.

 

Nan, you are doing something that so many won’t or can’t do – and it’s a true gift of love to your mom.  Be proud of yourself and give yourself love and respect and compassion for all you are doing .  You deserve to care for YOU like you are caring for your mom – don’t forget that!

All the best to you and your mom,

♥ Genie


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Letter #2

A Prude writes:

Dear Genie,

I’ve turned into a prude. I mean that literally. Most of my life I’ve had a very healthy sexual appetite, and that was true regardless of the quality of my lover. In the last several years, that has all changed. It’s not my partner; if I’m honest he’s the best lover that I’ve ever had. It’s not sex itself, once I’m in the process I love it. Beforehand, though, I’m miserable even thinking about doing it. I will make excuses, fake being sick or asleep, etc. I have made my husband go months without being intimate – at no fault of his own. I’ve wondered if there’s something physically wrong, but as I said – once we start – I’m all in. Physically everything works lol. It’s psychological and only before. I’ve worried about my husband finding physical attention elsewhere, and I would deserve it. I don’t even enjoy sexual jokes or references because I feel like it will lead to sex. I don’t know what to do.

* For the sake of this response, I am assuming the writer is female in a heterosexual relationship.  There is good information here if the writer is male as well.  

 

Dear A Prude,

Great question that soooo many women face!  Thank you for writing!

For starters, you are not a prude.  When a man suffers sexual dysfunction or loss of desire, they call it a medical issue and give him big blue pills, right?  They would never call a man a prude or blame him if he stops having an interest in sex.  The label “prude” is negative and blaming and hostile to your spirit.  I’d really like for you to change that label first – get all that self-blame out of your mind.  You are going through a period of dysfunction – that’s all.  Think of this as you would any area of unwellness or change in your health. This issue does not make you deserving of infidelity any more than any illness would excuse that behavior.   You are not at fault for anything and the compassion you are showing for your husband in wanting to remedy this situation shows your love for him and your marriage.  Make sure to add yourself to the list of love and compassion recipients.

So, let’s talk about sexual dysfunction and loss of desire in a woman. It happens to us all.  Why does it happen?  Honestly, there are hundreds of things that can cause this. Women are holistically complicated – physically, mentally and emotionally. This chart is a sample of causes of low libido:

intimacy blocks.png

As you can see, this topic is way too complicated and broad for me to really help you solve anything in a blog post.  However, I can give you some things to think about and hopefully head you in the right direction so you can overcome this issue in a way that is healing to yourself and your relationship.   To be honest, your sex drive may never be what it once was, but it’s important for your well-being to understand where the change is coming from.

First, you might want to check in with your primary physician.  Ask about getting a physical and testing done for your hormonal levels.  Talk to your doctor about any concerns you are having with your body and emotions.   Hormonal changes are the leading cause of low libido.

Next, check in with your thoughts and your mental/emotional connection with yourself and your spouse.  Does anything on the chart above draw your attention?

Here are some questions to ask yourself: (write your answers down)

  1. How do you feel about your body?
  2. How do you feel about your husband’s body?
  3. What three things would you change about yourself if you could?
  4. What three things would you change about your husband if you could?
  5. What would your husband say are the three best things about you?
  6. What are the three best things about your husband?
  7. What three things do you and your husband most enjoy doing together?
  8. What three things do you enjoy doing apart from your husband?
  9. What are three passions you have in life?
  10. What are three passions your husband has in life?

 

Study your answers for a second.

Notice any questions that you found hard to answer.  Notice any questions that you are unsure about the answers.  Are there any red flags in your answers that show you that you may be disconnected in your relationship?

These questions aren’t meant to “fix” what’s going on – but may get you thinking about areas that might need attention in your relationship.  It’s just a start.  If you notice that you’ve been avoiding some issues, it may be a good time to seek out some counseling or coaching for yourself or as a couple.

The main thing I would like you to take away from this is that change happens.  It’s not your fault.  There may be ways you can improve your sex life and your desire, but, as I said above, your sex drive may not ever be what it once was and there may not be any specific reason for it other than that sometimes it’s just life.  Life gets in the way.  Life cycles happen.  Life changes.

This may be a time of change in your relationship.  You may have to adjust to a lower libido and less sex – without guilt or shame for what is happening naturally in your body.   Your husband needs to understand what is going on as much as you do – and let’s hope he can respond with the same compassion and love with which you have displayed by reaching out for help.   Connecting and communicating with each other is vital in navigating the change together.

Best wishes,

♥ Genie


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Love Is The Cure

When you are standing up high on a pedestal of self-righteousness, it’s really hard to see way down to the roots of that terrible thing you tower over. You know you are right. You know you have the moral high ground. Those other people are so wrong it makes you furious! You are in the position to reign heaps of fire down on those terrible people with those specious beliefs – and you do so quite frequently.

And you feel better after you post with the name calling and the superior wit and the indignation. What a relief it is to let those people know how smart you are and how right you are and how wrong and poisonous is their mere existence. Damn you religious nut jobs! Get a job you socialist libtard! Screw you white nationalists! Read a book you ignorant trailer trash! You’re an orange cheeto loving dotard! Fascist pigs! Go back to your own country! Put god back in schools (my god, not yours)!!!


I’m not saying you’re wrong to have strong feelings about people who support the current president or the atrocious things he is doing. I’m also not saying you are wrong to worry about high taxes and feeding your family. It hasn’t been too long since I typed a few of those sentences on my own Facebook wall. One day I just decided it wasn’t getting me anywhere except angry, spun up, and acting out of integrity. See, I’m a recovering rage-aholic. I’ve worked really hard to change that and become a person with standards of behavior – naming calling and violent expressions are off my list of choices in how to respond to someone. And, yet, I have been sucked back in to this hate-fueled fighting on social media. So have you – even though that hostile, intolerant, hate-spewing person is not really who you are – not “in real life”.

When we react that way we give up our power; we give up our truth and our integrity. We say to the other person, “here, take my soul because I am following your lead.” We act just like them – we become just like them – we are just like them. We are fighting against something we think is wrong by becoming something that is wrong.

The hate is just not okay. It’s not. There is no moral high ground when hate is your strategy.


Hate cannot defeat hate; it’s a losing strategy. We’ve got to take our power back and come up with something that can help us heal the wounds in our friendships and relationships – and it starts with a compassionate heart and desire to be a better person.

Yes, there are sociopaths, psychopaths and really evil narcissists in the world who have no moral compass – no heart. These people are rare and I’m not talking about these kinds mentally disturbed people – I’m talking about your brother and your aunt and your uncle and your childhood friend who you suddenly find loathsome and shocking.

Is it possible – just possible – that these people we go after with venomous rage are also not the hate-spewing trolls they appear to be on social media? Are they different “in real life”? Are they just angry and full of fear just like you? I’m not excusing bad behavior and racism and bigotry and sexism and the vileness going on. I’m saying that all this hate is coming from somewhere and maybe we need to respond to that instead throwing more hate on the fire.

Hate comes from fear. Fear is the root of this dis-ease in our country. Hate-spewing is a symptom just like fever. Rage is a symptom. Irrational beliefs are a symptom. Believing lies and conspiracy theories from mentally ill propagandist is like taking poison from a snake-oil salesman instead of medicine from a doctor. And social media spreads this disease like the flu spreads through your household.

The disease is fear.

Can we cure this with more fear? Can we get rid of a fever by injecting more fever? Of course not! So why are we fighting hate with more hate?

The cure is love.

Why do people roll their eyes when I say that? Why is this such an uncomfortable idea?

Maybe because it means in order to act from love you have to change your beliefs. You have to be responsible for your own behavior. You have to think before you act and respond. You have to know yourself and your moral code.

It’s a heavy burden to love when hate is so much easier.

I’m working on a book to address ways we can #chooselove over hate (fear). It gives a look at love that doesn’t seem mushy or pollyanna – one that is comfortable – doable. It’s coming soon, I promise. In the meantime, here are some things to think about when you come across the hate posts and you want to reply or feel angry and outraged.


How to Love in a time of Hate

1. Self-love is priority. Self-love does not mean self-ish! This is not about thinking you are better than anyone. This is about setting boundaries in your relationships, doing your best each day, and forgiving yourself for your mistakes. This also means not subjecting yourself to this insanity on social media and getting yourself stressed and angry. Take a break.

2. Respond to a hate attack the way you would want someone to communicate with you. Think before you reply. Speak the truth with kindness and compassion even when they don’t deserve it – You deserve it! You deserve the calmness and peace that comes from doing the right things and following your moral code.

3. Refuse petty and childish tactics. I hate to say it, but act your age. No name calling. No character assassinations. No unnecessary vulgar language. Speak with integrity, poise and intelligence.  And when you are wrong, own up to it.

4. Don’t respond to every invitation to debate/fight. Yes, people call us out and say things on our posts or in our groups. You do not have to respond. You can roll your eyes and move on. It’s hard. This I know. But the time and energy you waste adding fuel to the fire of someone already spun up and looking for a place to unleash – it’s not worth it. Love yourself enough to move on.

5. Realize that it is not your job to save other people from their wrong thinking. People are allowed to be wrong. People are allowed to believe whatever they want to believe. It’s not up to you to change them. Likewise, you don’t owe anyone and explanation for your beliefs. This is big. If you can stop trying to change others, you are halfway there.

6. Control what is in your ability to control. That would be you; your behavior, your attitude, your responses, your action, your presence in the world. That’s it. Just you. The great thing about that is that you are able to shine your inner light without care for what others think, feel or believe because they aren’t your business!

7. Know that your behavior is a bigger influence on others than you could ever have in a Facebook debate. Lead by example. It’s that simple. Be the change you want to see in the world.

8. Learn to let go of people around you who break your boundaries and treat you with hate. Eventually enough is enough. It’s okay to walk away from people and situations that don’t change and grow. Sometimes sticking around just enables that person to continue to hate because they can because you stay. If you have to stop inviting uncle Dave to dinner so that you and your family can be at peace, then do so.

9. Remember, it’s just fear.  Fear is not rational.  Fear lies.  Fear is not truth.  Fear wants you to remain in your comfort zone and not change.  Fear will attack others.  Fear is selfish.


 

These ideas are mostly ways just to love yourself enough to stop hating others. It’s a start. The first round of antibiotics to cure this dis-ease. (Yes, we may need several!)

Know that this blog is written in love – to help you find peace in this insanity and to start the change we need to heal.
Peace & Love,

♥ Genie



hate does not drive out hate

Dear Genie #6

home page box dear genie


Today’s Dear Genie™ features two letters on a controversial topic – the state of the United States during the current Presidential Administration.  The first letter was sent to me several weeks ago and I wasn’t sure I would ever answer it.  I wanted to address the topic, but wasn’t sure I could do so in a way that wasn’t political.  Yesterday, I received the second letter and decided I would address them both today.  Though I cannot respond without some level of displaying my political opinions, I have tried to address the concerns of these two letters from a healing perspective, rather than to debate political ideology.  The first letter deals with the current condition of fear and stress in the country.  The second with relationships and broken faith in others.   – In peace, Genie


 

Letter #1
Stressed in the U.S. writes:

Dear Genie,

[The current U.S. president]* has got me stressed out. Every day there is new craziness from him and I feel like he is trying to become a dictator and destroy the freedom in our country. I’m mad and scared and there’s not a thing I can do except fight with people on Facebook! Am I over reacting? Am I just falling for media lies? Help! I’m going crazy here!

*I omitted the name of the president here. 

Dear Stressed in the U.S.,

Aren’t we all?  (I joke.  But, seriously, this fear and stress situation is an epidemic!)

I feel ya!  It’s almost surreal.  And the craziness is moving so fast that it’s hard to keep up or even keep track!  The lies, the gaslighting and psychological warfare, the firings, the executive orders, the 3 a.m. tweets, the hate rallies, the name calling, the vindictiveness, the assault on compassion and goodness, the destruction of programs that help people and our environment, the power grabbing, the incompetence, the racism and the hatred of the poor, the fascism approaching…    It is a constant attack on the senses – on emotions – on sanity – Every. Single. Day. 

It’s exhausting.  It’s infuriating.  It’s a feeling of utter powerlessness.

No, you are not over-reacting.  You are just reacting to the constant barrage of stress and fear.  It’s fight or flight mode – 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, thanks to social media and 24 hour news which is full of lies, spin, exaggerations and drama to make you tune in!  And this is true no matter which side of this discussion you fall on. 

What you and just about all of us need to do is to take our power back.  We need to get off the cycle of fight or flight and take back control of our emotions and reactions.  We need to be responsive, which comes from a place of personal power, instead of reactive, which comes from emotion and fear.

To respond means you take the time to think.  You reason.  You ponder what is true.  You question how something aligns with your own beliefs and character and moral code.  When we respond we are in our power.  When we are in our power we are strong, confident, rational, and behaving in the way we choose.  We come from a place of light instead of from fear.

To take our power back we need to learn to control what is ours to control – and usually that includes just one thing – our own behavior.  And, again – this is advice for EVERYONE no matter what your political ideology.

Here are some ways you can take your power back and be in self-control:

  1. Keep track of the things you know are true.  We are being attacked with a psychological warfare tactic known as gaslighting.  This is when we know something is true, but are being told it isn’t true and that we are crazy for thinking it is.  You probably do feel you are going crazy sometimes.  It is a tactic used to strip us of our power of reasoning.  Do not doubt your own mind.

 Look up AMY SISKIND on Facebook.  She has been keeping track of the events within this administration and posts a weekly list of the not normal things going on.  She has kept me sane for sure. 

  1. Stop and research before you post on social media. As much as we can see the lies coming from the other side of this, unfortunately there are also lies, exaggerations, and drama created from “our” side to also keep us wound up and pissed off.  This is reactionary and gives your power of reason away.  Check sources.  Check facts.  Don’t post in anger – post in power! Absolutely feel free to share verifiable information.  That is pro-active and responsive.
  1. Limit your news and social media, especially when you are feeling stressed. Guess what?  That news will be there tomorrow and the next day – take a break.
  1. Be the change you want to see. Post responsibly.  Post from power, not from fear and hatred for others.  Check your own biases.  Don’t fall for the tricks of fighting with others on social media with name calling, character assassinations, and the vile behavior you dislike from this president.  Don’t hate.  When we get drawn in to these fights we lose credibility, we lose the moral high ground, we lose whatever legitimate point we were trying to make.  We lose when we take the bait.  It’s really hard not to REACT.  But, remember – when you REACT you give your power away.
  1. Be pro-active.   VOTE! Get others to vote.  Share truth.  Share love.  Educate through your living example of what it means to be a good person and responsible citizen.  You can make a difference while also walking in integrity and personal power.

These are all things I have to remind myself of frequently, especially #4.  I am a recovering Facebook fighter.  That behavior didn’t hurt anyone but me – and it sure didn’t solve anything.  In fact, I think social media has created a tragic shadow side that has manifested in to a festering toxic waste dump for fear, hatred, and cruelty towards one another.  We have given much of our power away to this monster.

Check out the next letter for more on this.

In Peace & Power,

♥ Genie


stressed in the US.pngImage shared from Amy Siskind on Facebook. 


 

Letter #2
Sad in [T]rumpland writes:

Dear Genie,

Hello. I have been feeling so sad and disappointed lately in so many people in my life. My mind has been blown in this last year as I have seen people I love show their true colors since Trump became President. I have watched as they have either supported him or been silent in regards to the racism, misogyny, narcissism etc. I have watched them defending him and even in some cases been attacked by them for voicing my concerns. I feel like I can’t even talk to them anymore. I feel like I don’t know them and don’t not just political differences it makes me question what kind of human beings they are. Am I judging? Being too harsh? How do I deal with this?

 

Dear Sad in [T]rumpland,

Like the letter above, I have to tell you that I can totally relate to what you are feeling.  My family is multi-ethnic and the same people who say they love my children also say they support the current administration.  How do you say you love a brown skinned child and then vote for the white nationalist nominee?

Do these people we care about secretly hold these awful beliefs or are they just able to compartmentalize the way they see this man?  I mean, it is certainly a stretch for someone to say that they aren’t a racist and that they don’t hate poor people but they support this guy because he’s a good business man.

And what if they are now openly expressing white nationalist/nazi/fascist beliefs they have been harboring until it was safe to express them?  We wonder if we ever knew these people at all! These revelations can absolutely lead to a real crisis of faith in humanity.  This is something we really need to try and prevent.

How many relationships – family ties, friendships, and partnerships – have been broken due to this raging hate that has erupted like a volcano since 2008?   It’s true that there has always been a shadow side of our country that is racist, ethnocentric, and malicious to those outside the white, male, Christian power base.  We seemed to have progressed a great deal though until 2008 happened and fear took a hold of that power base and they have been hell bent on re-establishing their utopia ever since.  I didn’t speak to one of my brothers for two years and I lost a life-long friendship within days of the Obama election.  I lost all respect for most of my childhood friends and most of my family in the years that have followed.

There are millions who can share the same story, and it’s terribly sad and unfortunate.  We need our family.  We need our life-long friends.  We’ve forgiven them for foolishness our whole lives, and they have forgiven us for our mistakes.  Why are our differences in this situation so unforgivable from both sides?  Why don’t we have compassion and understanding for one another anymore?

It’s fear of not surviving.  It’s fear of not mattering in the world.  It’s fear of total annihilation. 

Look, we don’t have to peek too far back in time to see how awful humans can be to one another.  None of us want done to us as “we” have done to others.  On a primal level, the human understanding is that to survive we have to be in control.  The 2008 election was a nightmare for a lot of good ole boys who were told growing up that if a black man came to power he would enslave the white man, plus a lifetime of other white nationalist propaganda mixed in. Fear of survival took a powerful hold.  It’s easy to compartmentalize a person’s character if you think they are saving you from an awful fate.

What is happening since the 2016 election is the worst nightmare for those of us who grew up lamenting the Holocaust.  So we are fighting mad and intolerant and concerned for the survival of our democracy and of the poor and of brown skinned Americans.  We don’t want to listen to the fears of a bunch of people who have controlled everything forever.  And they don’t want to hear from a bunch of socialists who want to annihilate their culture and way of life.

It’s fear.  Primal.  Life and death.  Fear.  And fear is not logical.  Fear is not rational.  Fear does not play well with others.  Fear is Ego trying to save our lives.  

We are choosing sides with abomination of one another because “if you aren’t with me then you aren’t going to help me survive and you might even cause my destruction”.  This is the EGO on steroids.

We all need healing.  Both sides.  The biggest way we can do that is to follow my suggestions from the first letter and take our power back.  We’ve got to learn to control that which is in our ability to control – and that is our own behavior.  We cannot control what anyone else does or says – we can only control our response and our choices.  Our personal power allows us to act from love instead of from fear.  

The second thing we have to do is start communicating like humans again.  Nobody is talking in person anymore. Nobody is listening to anyone.  We are reacting to inflammatory posts with more inflammatory posts – and personal connection is absent.  UGH!  Facebook!  The epitome of the festering toxic waste dump for fear, hatred, and cruelty towards one another.  Would anyone say the things to your face that they say on social media?  Never!  Can you believe that it was just over ten years ago that we had to actually talk to someone face to face or over the phone to discuss these things?  When we talk to each other in person we consider the things we say before we speak.  We hear the tone in another’s voice.  We connect on a human level. We listen to one another. We feel human emotion like compassion, and we have lines we don’t cross.  We don’t know how to listen through social media. Boundaries we have in person are absent online.  Human connection is missing from our society.

People break bonds with friends and family and say offensive things to others easily because the human connection is lost.   They are a little box on a screen.  They are not human.  They are a machine.  And what emotions can we put with a machine – cold, rigid, uncaring,  dis-compassionate, and selfish.  We don’t love a machine.  We don’t worry about what we say to a machine.

We have got to become humans again.  We have got to talk to one another and listen to one another and do it away from the machines.  And to do that we have to be strong and coming from a place of love, not fear.  We have to regain our power.

Don’t lose faith in humanity just yet.  We have lost our way, but we can and will change.  We’ve got to find the light and our humanity again. We just need those who know better to lead the way.  I’m willing if you are.

In Peace, In Power – and maybe someday – In Person,

♥ Genie


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Dear Genie #5

home page box dear genie


Dreaming of yourself staring at the deep blue sea while meditating to the soothing sounds of water rolling on to the shore, as you imagine it covering your feet and gently gliding back to womb of the ocean, is a tremendously relaxing visualization. But there is nothing like being physically present and feeling the soft ocean breeze across your face while the smell of the sea fills your senses with tranquility and the sands massage your feet.  Real life is powerful soul healing. 

-Genie Mathews


DreamWeaver writes:

Dear Genie,

What are dreams really telling us? I constantly have a dream about one person in particular. Somebody I lost, not to death though. Somebody I had a deep connection with. It’s always good dreams, and although I feel happy to see them it makes me always feel very off and upset when I wake up because this person is no longer in my life. Should I just embrace the dreams and go with it, or is there something more I am missing? Help.

Dear DreamWeaver,

Dreams usually have one of three functions:

  1. They are a way to release stress and emotions that you are otherwise unable to release while awake. You tend to wake up from these dreams feeling the emotion of the dream, even though you recall very little of it.  They are generally chaotic and nonsensical, but can also be like a story unfolding.  The people in these dreams are usually familiar – and are people with whom you have a strong opinion towards.
  1. They are entertainment for your sleeping self. These dreams can be vivid and fun, yet make absolutely no sense. I find these dreams have wonderful colors and crazy events happening. These dreams can be initiated from a movie or TV show or conversation you had prior to bed.  Famous people and loved ones often show up in these dreams.  These dreams do not generally mean anything other than your mind was lit up by something just before bedtime.
  1. They can be messages from your intuition or higher self to alert you to something you need to pay attention to while awake. These alerts can be about your emotions, your physical health, a relationship, or even the health of others. Sometimes these dreams are premonitions – I have had several of these over my life and believe in them very much.  These messages can be from loved ones who have passed and they can be from higher vibrating energy sources like angels.

With just the information you have provided, I have intuitively picked up that your dream is most likely emotionally based (#1), but not in the way you might think.  I don’t think these dreams are actually about this person, but rather the deep connection you shared.  It’s that feeling of deep connection that your soul is seeking.  Maybe you haven’t found a connection with another person like that – or maybe you feel there is something missing in new friendships and relationships that you need.

That’s just what I am picking up energetically, but I’d need more information to be absolutely confident.  Dream interpreting really takes more a conversation to really get a good conclusion.

However, here are a few tips you can use to further investigate these dreams yourself and find some answers?

  1. Write down everything you can remember about your dream the next time you have one: Location, people, season, smells, colors, emotions, dialog, clothes, action, time placement and anything you can think of.
  2. All those things are symbols that are like pieces of the puzzle. Some are important and some are not.  What do these things mean to you?  What do they mean in relation to the person from your past?  What do these symbols represent in your life?  Write all this information down.
  3. What are the good and bad things about this person? What does this person represent as a symbol?  Did you learn or grow in anyway while this person was in your life?  What lessons did you learn from this person?

Symbols represent emotions linked to whatever that thing, person or place is in reality.   Because you mentioned in your letter that you were deeply connected with this person, I would take that as this person is symbolic for that kind of connection and the way it made you feel.  You dream of this person to connect with that emotion- that feeling.

So, yes – embrace it, learn from it, and understand yourself better through it!  If you resonate with the idea that you are missing this connection, then you can being working on creating that connection in your waking life.

I hope that helped a little!

♥ Genie

If you are interested in diving a little deeper in to this subject, I have a mini-course you can sign up for on my academy.  This is a free course and you just need to sign up on Openlearning.com to enroll.  You can check out the course information on the Genie’s Academy tab or click the image below to go to the course site.

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Do you have a problem you’d like to address here?  Send me a letter!  I would love to hear from you and see if there is some advice I can give to help you out.  🙂


Oil Life writes:

Dear Genie,

I have bought essential oils from Walmart. Are they just as effective as say the doterra oils? I really enjoy the tea tree, lemon, and mandarin. What are some other oils that are uplifting or help with having some positive energy?

Dear Oil Life,

I’m really glad to hear you are delving in to the realm of essential oils!  They can be a beautiful way to enhance your life -physically, mentally and emotionally.

To answer your question, the truth is that some oils are better than others. Some are certainly more pure and better sourced.  There are some oils being sold that are little better than synthetic fragrance. I cannot speak to Walmart products specifically because I’ve not used them, but I have purchased some from Amazon and I’ll let you know how they worked out below.

That being said, and in full disclosure, I am a DoTERRA Wellness Advocate and I cannot speak highly enough for the quality of their oils and the support available in using their product.

And, now I’m going to do something that as a representative for a company I should not – I’m going to fully admit that DoTERRA can be expensive and that you can find really good product other places.  But, first, let me tell you why DoTERRA costs what it does and why it can be a really good option for purchasing your oils in comparison to what you may come across at retail stores.

DoTERRA is absolutely trustworthy in their sourcing.  They provide all the information you could want on where their product is grown, how it is extracted and if there are other oils  (like fractionated coconut oil, for example) in the end product, if any.   Their product is therapeutic grade and pure.

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This kind of information is not always available when you purchase oils from retail stores and unfortunately sometimes the quality you are getting is very diluted and not pure essence.  Sometimes it is little better than fake fragrance and there is no FDA oversight of truth in labeling.  You may see 100% pure listed on a product that actually means the one or two drops of oil in the bottle are pure – but the rest is filler (other carrier oil or even alcohol, witch hazel, water, etc..) You’ve got to do your homework when purchasing oils from a retail store.

DoTERRA’s website is full of information on ways to use oils safely, ideas for how you can make your own products using oils, recipes, emotional benefits, and physical benefits. This is a wealth of information you don’t easily find from purchasing off the shelf.

Because some retail store products are not the same quality, the recipes and uses you see on the internet are going to be less effective than a pure product.  I purchased some from Amazon a few years ago to make soaps and bath bombs as gifts and the aroma was disappointing in the final product – the aromatherapy I was looking for was not successful.   (Lesson learned, a cheaper brand means you use more of the product.  A high quality brand means you use less.)

Also, if something like alcohol is added to a cheaper brand, it could end up toxic in some of the uses.  You wouldn’t want to add lemon oil to your water or food recipe if it is not a pure product.  Likewise, if you are using a diluted Tea Tree Oil for a skin blemish or other healing use, it will not work as effectively as a pure Tea Tree Oil (melaleuca).  ***Tea Tree Oil is a common healing product and a good quality product can be found in the vitamin section at Walmart.***

And, my final point in favor of DoTERRA is that each customer has a multi-level customer service and access to education when purchasing and using the product.  You have a personal advocate and their upline and the website as support for each and every purchase you make.  That gives you an amazing and broad range wisdom to tap in to when choosing oils.  If your personal Wellness Advocate can’t tell you about an oil you want to use from first hand experience, one of her team members can.

This kind of customer service and assistance is not found through a retail store and is one reason for a cheaper cost in the stores (along with a diluted product). Advice on safety and cautions alone are really important when purchasing oils, but the experience of MLM representatives is invaluable first hand wisdom to help you make the best choices in spending your hard earned dollars.

*One way to lower the cost with a company like DoTERRA is to become a Wholesale Customer or Wellness Advocate.  This lowers the price to a wholesale price and gives you a way to earn points that allows you to buy oils for free with the points.*

That all being said, you can find ways to purchase really good oils that don’t have the MLM sales tag (though they will still be more expensive than less pure products).  You can check out health fairs, natural shops, your local hippy stores, and places where you find alternative healing.  These places will also provide at least some level of assistance in helping you choose an oil and how to use it.  If you are lucky enough to have one of these places nearby, they are certainly a great alternative to purchasing through a big box retail store.

Again, I can’t tell you the quality of the Walmart products – but definitely do your research before buying.

Cheaper and diluted oils can absolutely be great if you want to freshen the house – much like the melting wax cubes or aerosol sprays.  When the house smells good, you feel good.  And in that way it is all great.  But, if you are wanting something that goes a little deeper in to natural health, supporting your emotions, physical healing, and you want to know how to use them properly and safely – you definitely want to make sure you are buying a pure, therapeutic grade oil plus gaining access to tips and safe use information you can trust.   That is going to cost a little more no matter where you purchase them.

With essential oils, you absolutely do get what you pay for.

Ideas for uplifting oils:  Anything citrus, I especially love grapefruit.  Also, peppermint – and you can mix peppermint and orange for an awesome pick me up!

Hope that helps!

♥ Genie


If you would like more information on becoming a DoTERRA Wellness Advocate or Wholesale Customer, please feel free to reach out to me at geniemathews@outlook.com or message me through the contact page and leave an email address so I can get back to you.  The Become a Blossom tab above also has some great information on courses that my upline offers to people who join with us too, if that is of interest to you.

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Reverend of Metaphysical Humanism

Hello friends!

I am stopping in today to announce that after a year of study  I earned my Masters in Metaphysical Humanistic Science AND am now officially ordained in the Church of Metaphysical Humanism.  🙏✨🌟

I’m sure some of you are wondering what the heck is Metaphysical Humanism?

Metaphysics quite simply means the study of that which is beyond physics (physical).  Humanism is the practice of understanding and enhancing the human condition.  Together they create a spiritual philosophy centered upon empowering the human spirit.  💜

As a metaphysician and humanist, my intention is to promote the holistic wellness of people as living beings on Earth.  I am less concerned with an after life, and instead seek to help heal the fear and hell-state many suffer in their living embodiment.  Do no harm; Do right, is my main guiding commandment.

The use of metaphysical tools that help connect with the Soul Self and energy of the Universe (…God, Creator, Source…whatever you call that which gave you life) are part of my spiritual practice and these tools include many wisdoms from modern religion and from ancient peoples.

My mission and ministry are simple:

✨💜 Choose Love  💜✨

Love of self.  Love of others.  Love of the Earth and her creatures.

Love is the opposite of fear and love is the absence of fear.  Love is wise.  Love is compassionate. Love is freedom.  Love is peace. Love is healing.

Dear Genie™, spiritual counseling & coaching, holistic education and community service will all remain part of my mission, and a weekly spiritual service via podcast/radio is in the works. Weddings, spiritual ceremonies, energy clearings and other rituals are all planned offerings as well.   I’ll share more on this in the coming weeks as I form my ministry.  All will be welcome regardless of religion or beliefs, race, culture, orientation, or gender.  Love is all that is required – and if you are fresh out love (or full of fear) you are invited to come to have your cup refreshed and refilled.

In the meanwhile, Dear Genie™ is always looking for submissions and to help you on your journey.  Drop me a letter.

💖 Genie

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Dear Genie #4

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Toi, from Buckhannon writes:

Dear Genie,

I’m not a fan of talking about my mistakes. I’m normally the person who denies making any, but I know that one in particular is about to come to the surface. It was unintentional, but it happened. I overdrew my bank account and used our vacation fund to fix it. I didn’t tell my family because I intended to put it back obviously. Instead I put it off every paycheck until now. My husband plans to start planning our vacation in a few weeks, which is what we always do. We pay and plan in March for a trip in June. I know my family is going to be very upset with me for not telling them sooner. Any tips?

Dear Toi from Buckhannon,

It is hard owning our mistakes. It’s scary facing the disapproval of others because we are afraid they will withdrawal their love from us.  But, the truth is that most often we don’t face our mistakes because we aren’t very good at forgiving and accepting ourselves.  We are harder on ourselves than anyone else ever could.  (most of the time)  Unfortunately, mistakes are how we grow – and if we don’t acknowledge them, we won’t learn the lesson they are here to teach us.

I’ll get back to that towards the end, right now you have a fire to put out – so let’s talk about that first.

So, you know that the truth is about to come out.  There is no avoiding it.  Even if you put the money back right this minute, this incident has left its mark on your subconscious.  Hiding something from your spouse is just a really bad idea because guilt and shame eventually eat away at your self-esteem and it changes who you are.

What is the best way for this to come out?  My counseling professor, Dr. Kelley,  has a saying:  Deal with the problem now and suffer a little, or deal with it later and suffer a lot. Your husband finding out when trying to book a vacation and the transaction is denied is not the best way for him to learn of this.   You need to address it and the sooner the better.

Here is how you can prepare for the discussion:

  1. Have a financial plan to put the money back in the account. (even if it means the vacation is delayed) Be specific.  What is your plan to repay the money?
  2. Get your attitude in check.  Be humble and sincere. Acknowledge your mistake and your desire to fix it.  Explain that you understand the disappointment he must feel and that you are willing to make amends.  Why you did it is only important in knowing what changes you need to make. It’s more important to be able to express what you’ve learned and that you will take action to make sure it doesn’t happen again.
  3. Put your listening ears on. Allow your family to express their feelings without you being defensive. Now, name calling or violence or other degrading behavior is not acceptable on their part and you should not tolerate any of that – but listening to their feelings will be very important in them being able to trust that you understand how your action impacts them.

And when you’ve done all the above and taken responsibility for your mistake,

Learn the lesson, make amends and forgive yourself. 

You are human and humans grow through experience – much of which is making mistakes.  Yes, this is a pretty serious mistake because it impacts your family and their trust and faith in you.  Learn the lesson this mistake presents to you.  Do you need financial counseling?  Do you need to create an organized record keeping system?  Do you need to take your name off the vacation fund savings account to keep you from having access?  These are questions you need to ask yourself so that you are able to change the behavior that led to the mistake.

And, then, forgive yourself and put this in the past knowing that you have ensured you won’t repeat this behavior because you learned the lesson.  Forgive yourself so that this experience doesn’t hurt you moving forward.  Guilt and shame are insidious cancers to our self-esteem and personal vibration. Grow through this and move on.

Try to acknowledge your mistakes going forward as well – even if they only affect you.  Take responsibility for your mistake. Learn the lesson there.  Make a correction.  Forgive yourself.  Grow.  🙂

Best of luck with this,

♥Genie

PS – Take a look at the next letter for more on self-forgiveness.

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Looking for Peace in WV writes:

So without going into long detail, my issue is this: I seem to have a hard time forgiving myself for past mistakes. I have overcome these mistakes and have came out on top, however I tend to beat myself up over past bad decisions. How do I find peace with these mistakes and move forward without the regret looming over me constantly?

Dear Looking for Peace,

I put your letter second this week on purpose in the hopes you could take something from the first letter and response.

The biggest reason we cannot forgive ourselves is because we do not accept that we are perfectly imperfect human beings.  We can forgive others for terrible things.  “They aren’t perfect” we tell ourselves.  We have such a hard time saying that to ourselves though.  And it all comes from the fear of being judged and not being loved by others.

Honestly, what would happen if you forgave yourself and stopped living in guilt and shame?  Will others think that you aren’t sorry for your mistakes?  Will the outside world think you didn’t learn your lesson if you release yourself from this self-sentenced prison?  Will people stop loving you if you can hold your head up and live without the weight of the past on your shoulders?

You notice that all those questions are about what others might think of you and your choice to love yourself.  Would anyone in your life care if you chose to love yourself as unconditionally as you love them? I doubt it – and if they do, it might be time to find some new people to be in your life.

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As I said in the letter above, guilt and shame are a cancer to our soul.  If you had cancer in your physical body you would do whatever necessary to remove it – right?  But, how do you do it when it is your soul?

First, you have to decide that you are deserving of your own forgiveness.  Then, you have to shift your thinking.  At this point the guilt and shame are a really bad habit you’ve acquired and in order to quit you’ve got to find a better one.  Those negative thoughts have to be changed to positive ones and it will take a while to change this habit.

Here is a mantra exercise for you to say when these feelings of guilt and shame come up:

I accept myself as being perfectly imperfect.  I learn the lessons of my mistakes and grow as a human.  The purpose of being human is to learn and grow.  I forgive myself.  I release myself from the guilt and shame of not knowing what I didn’t know when I didn’t know it.  Others will love me when I love myself.  I do love myself.  I do forgive myself.  The past is a lesson. I am free to live in happiness and joy.  I am free to move forward in life.  I am happiness and joy. 

Forgive yourself.

Love yourself.

Accept yourself.

Be free.

 

All the best,

♥Genie

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Dear Genie #3

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Have the courage to ask for your desires ♥


Sheila P. writes:

Dear Genie,

Will I receive more money soon?

Dear Sheila P.,

Oh, Sheila, if I could answer that I would be in great demand as a fortune teller! 🙂

In the Law of Attraction, the secret to manifesting abundance is that you have to know that your desires will be fulfilled.  You ask the universe (or God) for what you desire and then you thank the universe (or God) for providing it because you know it is on the way.  You know it.

So, Sheila, are you going to receive money soonAsk. Believe. Receive. 

I’ll tell you what – I will draw a card from The Good Tarot deck and see if the universe will give me an answer for you.

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And we have the 10 of Water with the Buddha statue.  The Buddha is famously a symbol for good fortune!  I think you’ve got the answer for sure!

Be patient and good fortune will arrive.  Believe it!

Best of Luck!

♥ Genie


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Scott writes:

Dear Genie,

I’ve been married for almost twelve years now. We have a great relationship and three great kids. I can’t complain! I have a good job and we definitely don’t go without. The problem is I’m bored. I have the life that most people aim for but something is missing. I’ve tried finding new hobbies and making friends but it’s not helping. I don’t know how to approach my wife about this without it sounding like I’m unhappy in our marriage. I’m not lacking anything sexually or romantically, I’m not bored with her or our kids. I’m bored with my life. Same routine, same thing every day. How can I bring this up without hurting feelings? Is there a solution or is this something I need to get used to? Thanks.

Dear Scott,

As humans we are designed to desire growth and change.  It’s natural.  It’s how we evolve. It’s that whole cave-man nomad instinct in us. We grow and change as individuals whether we choose to or not.   There are many who fight this instinct and that leads to a lot of unhappiness and suffering.   It is really healthy that you have recognized this need in yourself and I applaud your sensitivity towards your wife.  While we have a need to strive for individual growth and fulfillment, we do have to consider how our behavior and choices affect those around us.

Do something for me.  Imagine your life in twenty years if you don’t talk to your wife about this and don’t find that something to fill in the missing piece.  Do you notice cracks in the beautiful life you have now?  Has the boredom grown to unbearable levels – and has that changed who you are?  What are you wishing you had done while you had the chance?  

There is a solution, Scott.  And, yes, that will include talking to your wife about your desires and feelings.  Trust me, we gals always know when something is wrong or changing and unless we know why, we always blame ourselves.  She will pick up on this energy from you whether you tell her or not.  Fear of having this conversation will likely cause you both hurt feelings in the long run.

The thing I would suggest you try to do first is really figure out what it is you want to fill that missing piece.   Knowing what you want will make the conversation with the Mrs. much more clear.  The problem is you have tried some things but don’t really know what you desire.

Normally, when helping someone figure out what to do with their life, I would have them do some visualization exercises to imagine their dream life.  It sounds like you’ve got a head start there with a happy home, marriage and family.  You’re a wonderful success story.   I might also suggest to others that they take a look at their hobbies and skills to see where their talent and passions meet.  You are a step a head on that as well, although you’ve found no solution. It seems like you are in need of some inspiration to know what you want to fill this missing-ness(Yes, I made that word up.)

Have you thought about volunteering? Something on a personal level (meaning to directly work with people instead of donations or fundraising) – perhaps with the elderly or youth?  Take a look in your community and see what need there is for someone with your talents.  Some ideas: Veterans programs, Senior Centers, Youth Mentor programs, Youth coaching, etc.

I’m suggesting this, not as the answer to what you are seeking, but as a path to self-discovery.  Volunteering on a personal level can help you find your inspiration in these ways:

  1. It just feels good to help others. When you feel good, you energetically connect with your intuition and open yourself up for ideas and creativity.  This is divine inspiration.
  1. When working with the elderly you do a lot of listening. You hear the stories of the events that brought them joy.  You hear the regrets of the dreams they never lived.  Likewise, when working with youth – you pick up on the exciting futures they have planned and all their big and wild dreams.  As you support them, they will inspire you.
  1. Volunteering is a great activity you can do with your wife. You may grow as a couple from the experience and you both may find inspiration for living your individual passions and desires. 

Even if you don’t take me up on that idea, your inspiration will come.  You’ll want to share it with your wife.  She loves you and wants you to be happy – she may just need to be reassured that your happiness still includes you walking this life journey by her side.  Once you know what you want, you’ll be able to talk to her about your inspiration and why you are inspired, rather than just saying, “I’m bored and feel like something is missing in my life.”  (Which we know would be misunderstood and taken personally.)

Also, include her in deciding how to take action on this inspiration – listen to her ideas and her concerns.  (For example, if you are inspired to jump out of airplanes – she might have a lot of concerns that you’ll need to answer first.  🙂 )

The bottom line is that growth and change happen – whether we seek it out or not.  It’s just nature.  You have the choice to deny it and ignore it and work against it and possibly end up unhappy and regretful while changes you don’t want happen anyway.  Or, you can tune in to your desires and live an inspired life on the path of your choosing.

Find your inspiration and talk to her. Allow her to grow and change by your side, as I know you will do for your wife when the call for something more beckons her.

Wishing you all the best,

♥ Genie

P.S. Some metaphysical suggestions:

Peppermint leaf and Blue Lace Agate stone are both really good support when having a conversation you are nervous about.  Peppermint helps with nerves and is calming.  Blue Lace Agate is a throat chakra stone and helps you communicate your truth in a loving way.

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The advice on this blog are only suggestions for life improvement using the life experience and training of Genie Mathews.  There is no medical or legal advice contained within and content is not to be used in place of medical or legal advice.

Exciting Education Opportunity!

I had to share this info from my blog platform because it’s a great chance for anyone who is looking for courses and educational opportunities in the holistic healing field.🙏✨

This is an offer for a BOGO course from the Blossoms United Align + Shine Academy 😁 🌸🌺

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To see what courses we offer and how to take advantage of this offer, click the “Become a Blossom” tab above or email me at ggeniemathews@gmail.com for information.  👍

Dear Genie #2

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♥Special Valentine’s Day Advice Blog♥


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You are soooo loved – today & every day!


Tammy M. writes:

Dear Genie,

I’ve been married for 8 years and my husband always plans the same thing for Valentine’s day.  We go to dinner and a movie.  I’m not complaining though.  I know lots of marriages that don’t even do that much.  It’s just that it is one of the only times a year we go out without the kids and I would like to do something that is special and gives us memories.  Am I just being a nag?  Should I talk to him about it?

Dear Tammy M,

If you want to be married for 8 more years I would say don’t criticize someone who is trying to do something nice.  Criticizing only puts the other person on the defense and doesn’t solve anything.

On the other hand, I applaud you for wanting to spend what little alone time you have away from the kids to have meaningful time with your spouse.  No, you aren’t being a nag – you want more for your relationship and that is a good thing.

So, here is my question – why don’t you plan your Valentine’s date?  Just suggest to your hubby that you’d like to “let him off the hook” this year and you plan the outing that you desire.  On the outing fill him with reassurance that you planned the date to show your love for him and because you appreciate how he has always been willing to take you out on this special day (when so many other married guys don’t).  You don’t want him to come away feeling he has ever let you down with his dinner and movie dates.

You don’t have much time to plan this today – so get to creating your surprise date already!

Have fun and do love!

♥Genie

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Valentine’s Blues writes:

Dear Genie,

I’m single this Valentine’s day for the first time in many years.  Any suggestions on how to make the best of it?

Dear Valentine’s Blues,

The good thing is that you are getting to spend some time getting to know yourself again.  The bad thing is that a day like today is in your face and makes you feel like you are lacking something. It’s not set up to be loving to people who aren’t in love, is it? It’s like a private club that you don’t belong to anymore.

Or do you? 

It is so important to love yourself – even more than you think you could love a partner.  If you don’t love and honor yourself, not only can others not love and honor you, but you can’t love and honor others. What you give yourself is what you can give to others.

Today is nothing more than the day to honor love.  You are love.  You are loved.  Honor yourself.

Take yourself out.  Buy yourself a beautiful plant or bouquet of flowers.  Treat yourself to that delightful chocolate.  Enjoy a lovely dinner.

Love yourself.  You are so worth it!

Have a beautiful evening!

♥Genie

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Dear Genie™ #1

home page box dear genie

Welcome to the launch of my new advice blog, Dear Genie™, where I answer your concerns that you write to me!  Today I have selected two letters – some days there may be more and some days there may be less, depending on the letter length and my response.  You can submit your own letter and concern by using the “contact” tab above!

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(My work space this morning!)


Carol S. writes:

Dear Genie,

You mentioned soul healing in the types of things you talk about. What is meant by soul healing, how do you heal your soul, and how do you know if you need it? Thanks.

Dear Carol S.,

As a holistic wellness adviser, I see the body as three parts – Physical Body, Mental Body, and Spiritual Body.  When I talk about the soul and soul healing I am talking about our spiritual/energy body.  Spiritual, Energy and Soul are used inter-changeably.

Our soul provides our connection to the unseen, it’s our source of creativity, and our inner light.  The soul gives us our intuition and instinct and “6th sense” by connecting us with something higher. Some call that higher entity God or Jesus, others call it the Universe, or the Collective Consciousness or Source or, simply, Energy.   The soul is our own higher-self, whichI believe, lives on and retains memory after our earthly bodies have gone.

We know we need soul healing when we feel disconnected to this part of ourselves. As humans have grown more advanced, we have relied more heavily on our mental and physical strengths – setting aside our connection to the unseen and ignoring our intuition. This disconnect may see us having a low self-esteem, feelings of unworthiness, loneliness or being unloved; Our reactions to life will be out of alignment with our internal ethics and how we want to respond to situations – we show anger, have addictions, behave self-destructively, etc.; We will feel powerless and lacking connection to our inner voice (intuition) or we will have problems making decisions and taking action in life; We will often live in the past and dwell on mistakes and memories, instead of being focused on today.  Or, we may live in fear of the future with uncertainty and doubt keeping us stuck and too afraid to make change.  It’s a feeling of unrest… of being dis-eased… of incompleteness.

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How we heal the soul is to open up and reconnect with our higher-self and bring about balance in our lives to become self-complete.  And that takes a lot work and willingness to make changes in our thoughts and beliefs and behaviors.    These are the things I work on with clients and what other spiritual coaches and holistic healers work towards with their clients – whether with Reiki, yoga, crystals, chakra work, meditation, spiritual counseling, or any number of other modalities.  It all comes down to reconnecting to that part of us we have forgotten.

Thanks for the great question!

♥Genie


Interested in working with me 1-on-1?

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Getting Burned Out in WV writes:

Dear Genie,

I’m writing this because I’m exhausted. Both of my grandparents are I’ll, and need help. My mother (their daughter) is too wrapped up in her own self pity to help them, at all. My sibling is too involved in his own drama to help – and if I’m honest, I don’t want him helping anyway because he has a knack for creating problems. I can only be there on the weekends because my son has school and I have responsibilities as a wife and mother, too. I’ve offered to come help them throughout the day while he’s at school, but they refuse. The truth is, my health isn’t the best. I have several problems of my own, and being busy EVERY DAY is wearing me down. Not only am I exhausted, but I’m in pain from all of the work. Whenever I’m there I refuse to let them do anything because I know they are in worse shape than I am, and need to rest. I don’t know how to get my mother to help. She’s not working and depends on them for most of her expenses. I feel that she’s ungrateful and selfish, but approaching her in ANY way has proven ineffective. I’ve tried being understanding, I’ve tried being blunt – if not rude. They can’t afford to hire someone because, as I said, they’re footing the bill for her utilities and life. (they just bought her a vehicle – again)

How do I find the energy to be everywhere and do everything? How do I get through to someone who legitimately doesn’t see an issue with their behavior? How do I get my grandparents to see that they are enabling her sloth? It’s to the point where she refuses to do anything – even take care of herself. She will honestly pay my brother and I to come do her dishes, or clean her room!!!

Help?

Dear Getting Burned Out in WV,

I can hear your frustration and worry for you grandparents and your mom.  Your concerns have so many layers and it feels like a tangled mess, yes? Honestly, I have a pretty un-messy answer for you.

You cannot change anyone else’s mind or behavior. 

These are all adults.  They have the right to make their own decisions, good or bad.  Your mom is not going to change until she decides to either do it herself or to get professional help to get out of her “sloth”, as you put it.  Likewise, your grandparents will continue to enable her until they decide for themselves that they will stop providing for her.  Unfortunately, in this case, these adults have the free will to make these choices even though you can see that they are destructive to them, and to you.

The only person you can change is you and your participation in this family situation. 

So, here is my advice:

First, self-care is vital.  Every day you should be doing something just for you that brings your heart peace, joy, or passion.  You must fill your own cup before you can care for anyone else.  Self-care is not just pampering, however. You can also work on a hobby or be creative in some way.  You can walk in the woods or connect with nature.  You can meditate or practice yoga.  Write, journal, or read something inspiring.  These are just a few suggestions – follow your own heart and passion.  Take care of you first.

Second, because you love your grandparents and will still assist them (who wouldn’t help their grandparents?), you will need to set up some boundaries for what you can help with and how much help you can give – then, stick to those boundaries.  This is not to punish your grandparents.  This is to help you give them consistent and loving support without getting burned out.  Know your limitations. 

Third and final – rethink doing anything for any adult that can and should be doing it for themselves, especially since you recognize what harm enabling can do.  Give back responsibility to those who can and should be responsible for themselves.

boundary

As a bonus – your changes in caring for yourself and being consistent and not enabling others will likely speak much louder and have a bigger influence on your family than any conversation you could have with them.

I truly hope that helps.

♥Genie


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This advice is not intended to substitute for the advice of your doctor, therapist, or lawyer.