Category: spirituality

Check-in on 101 goals

So we’re officially a little over halfway through 2019, which means that there are 815 days left in this challenge (as today is July 5th 2019). So I decided that I should probably do a check-in on the goals and see where I’m at with them. Updates are in bold.

The dates for my 101 goal challenges are:

So my original start and finish dates were:

Start Date: January 1 2018

Finish Date: September 28 2020

My new start and finish dates:

Start Date: January 1, 2019

Finish Date: September 28, 2021

Here are my 101 goals for the next 1001 days (random and non-grouped):

  1. Transition into a biotech or biopharma company as a research scientist
  2. Become fluent in Spanish
  3. Become fluent in German
  4. Learn to program (R and maybe python)
  5. Visit at least three new countries (0/3)
  6. Finish the various other e-course bundles that I bought (list out later)
  7. Move to a new(ish) city for #1
  8. Make it through at least 250 days of beachbody workouts (share on twitter?) (0/250) *Luckily it doesn’t have to be consecutive days (though I would like that)—I haven’t done a Beachbody workout in awhile (I also can’t remember how many I’d done before I hit my slump).
  9. Paint & frame at least one original painting (0/1)
  10. Finish the Dream Job Hack program
  11. Finish the Youtube for bosses course
  12. Finish the Youtube course creation for bosses course
  13. Launch a youtube channel
  14. Launch a online course
  15. Get blog traffic to 500+ views/day
  16. Publish 5-10 scientific blog posts (0/10)
  17. Practice more photography (1-2 posts a week) I’ve managed to stick with the photography challenge so far, so at least on the blog there have been new pictures post on a semi-constant basis (at least for the past three-four months).
  18. Get instagram followers to 800+
  19. Showcase crafts on blog (afghans, artwork, jewelry)
  20. Learn to make my own jewelry
  21. Re-pierce my ears
  22. Finish at least 200 personal/professional development books (and post reviews) (35/200) *So out of the 274 books I have on my book reading list for both personal and professional development (and this number is growing)—I’ve read 20 in 2018, and 15 so far in 2019—that means I only have another 238 books to read to finish the list (and that is only if I don’t add anymore books to the list).
  23. Interact more on Linkedin (actually network with connections) (at least 4 a week) (0/140)
  24. Reach at least 14,014,000 steps (0/14,014,000); though if I add in the steps from 2018—this could actually be closer to 20,000,000 steps (goal—19,124,000 by Sept 28 2021 (as of yesterday (07/04/19) 8,047,645/19,124,000).
  25. Visit at least one new national (or state) park (0/1)
  26. Visit at least one new national (or state) monument (0/1)
  27. 5 pushups on toes (0/5)
  28. 10 pushups on toes (0/10)
  29. Fly/land at least 3 new airports
  30. Visit one new city & state (US) (0/1; 0/1)
  31. Go to one or more scientific conferences (0/1)
  32. Go to a blogging conference (0/1)
  33. See the Northern Lights
  34. Present at a scientific conference (0/1)
  35. Post free monthly challenges in facebook groups
  36. Write (or start) a book
  37. Complete a 365 day photography challenge (137/365) I started the challenge a little late this year, or more accurately it took me awhile to build momentum to continue posting a daily picture.
  38. Learn to cross-stitch
  39. Reach 400+ followers on pintrest
  40. Reach 1000+ followers on twitter
  41. Publish at least two blog series (0/2)
  42. Mediate at least 5 minutes a day  (0/1001) This one has been an off and on success—there have been at least one or two weeks when I didn’t feel like meditating nightly, and therefore I didn’t—but I’m slowly getting back into the routine.
  43. No extra snacks at work (i.e. no hitting the coffee shop for cookies in the morning) This one is a work in progress, there are some days when I’m really good at not getting extra snacks at work, and there are other days when I cave and get chocolate.
  44. Declutter the movies in the house
  45. Create an editorial calendar for blog (0/33) Well I’m slowly starting to try creating editorial calendars, but have only been really good at posting certain topics (new/full moon goals & updates, monthly updates & photography challenge). This is something I still need to work on.
  46. Credit card debt down to less than $500 a month (and getting paid off monthly in full) This is almost happening—I do have my debt at a level that I can pay off monthly, though some bills get a little higher than planned.
  47. Monthly budget (plus list of monthly recurring charges on credit cards) (0/33) I’ve been doing this, though not listing the recurring charges on my credit cards.
  48. Learn to give mani/pedi and give myself one a month (0/33) This one is off the list—because I have yet to do it, and while I might in the future I don’t see me doing it quite yet.
  49. Get a new sewing machine and make a new quilt for bed. This one is on hold until I move and then I’ll be buying a new sewing machine.
  50. Make my new moon & full moon goals (0/66) I’ve been keeping up with this one. Though I may not hit all the goals for both the new moon & the full moon—I’m at least putting my intentions out there for the universe to hear.
  51. Buy a new couch and chair for my living room. This one and #s 52-54 are dependent on success with #1 & #7
  52. Buy a new dresser for my bedroom
  53. Buy a new mattress & box-spring for my bed
  54. Buy a new TV & stand for living room
  55. Reorganize my storage unit
  56. Buy fabric & foam and make new cushions for rocking chair
  57. Create a posting schedule (editorial calendar) for facebook pages (0/66) I’m behind on this.
  58. Generate at least three months of memes for facebook pages (0/3)
  59. Create posting schedule (editorial calendar) for instagram (0/33) Behind on this.
  60. Learn to use photoshop for memes & posts
  61. Make a 30-day Zumba schedule & stick with it (0/30) Haven’t done this yet.
  62. Visit one or more new zoos (0/1)
  63. Visit one or more new aquariums (0/1)
  64. Make a top 10 favorite author list (for different genera; romance, fantasy/sci-fi, mystery/thriller, non-fiction) for blog
  65. Write and share at least two posts on linkedin every two months (0/32) Behind on this as well.
  66. Ask for endorsements from 6 well known connections on linkedin (0/6) Behind on this well.
  67. Endorse 3 to 5 people on linkedin every four months (0/40) Behind on this.
  68. Renew professional memberships (0/6) Need to do this soon.
  69. Get into the “best shape” of my life. This is one of the things I’m going to try to focus on more, and maybe should be moved higher in the list.
  70. Finish reading books on scientific writing (review and post) (0/7)
  71. Take a multivitamin & supplements daily (0/1001). There have been several days (going on to a week) that I’ve missed taking my multivitamin & supplements.
  72. Design a logo for my blog/website
  73. Finish 3 hidden object games without using hints, or the strategy guide
  74. Go to a author-reader conference and meet authors
  75. Write in journal daily (0/1001). There have been several weeks that I didn’t do this (mainly due to my current mood—even though I know when I’m feeling down or in a funk that is actually a good time to journal).
  76. Complete my book of Sudoku puzzles (minus the ones crossed out)
  77. Drink 70 oz of water a day (0/1001). There have been quite a few days when this hasn’t happened.
  78. Color in two coloring books (0/2) (pictures on blog/instagram)
  79. Knit another afghan (diamond pattern) This has been started, and hopefully will be finished this coming winter.
  80. Watch all the episodes of Hawaii 5-0
  81. Go to at least 2 professional networking events (0/2)
  82. Update Linkedin profile (0/2)
  83. Watch all the episodes of Grimm
  84. Design a science based board game
  85. Hold a two minute plank (on forearms)
  86. Hold a 90 second plank (full)
  87. Go at least one weekend a month without social media (0/33) This hasn’t happened yet, though with the way the world is going I might start doing it.
  88. Create (and update) a vision board. I’ve created and updated a digital vision board, and will probably try to update it at least every two to three months.
  89. Create my own altar (wiccan/pagan)
  90. Learn basic sign language
  91. Create job searching/networking editorial calendar (0/12)
  92. Get an additional external hard drive to back up the laptop & external DVD drive for installing printer program on laptop
  93. Create my own coffee table photography book
  94. Touch base with friends that I haven’t talked to lately
  95. Savings up another 20K (0/20K)
  96. Get at least three plants and keep them alive (0/3)
  97. Stretch daily (0/1001)
  98. Watch all the episodes of The Librarians
  99. Watch all the episodes of Once Upon A Time
  100. Get Fit with Jessi to 1000+ likes
  101. Get BecomingJessi to 1000+ likes

I’ve only removed one goal from the list—giving myself a mani/pedi monthly. I’ve never been the type to fuss with their nails (though I know with job searching, I do need to start taking better care of my nails, and this does include painting them every so often). I’ve realized that I have fallen behind on some of the daily goals (taking my multivitamins, drinking a certain amount of water a day, and writing in my journal every day)—but at least I do start back up, even if it tampers off, and then starts again.

I also know that there are goals that I haven’t started on, and others that require another goal to be accomplished before they are looked at. I know where I need to try to focus for the next few months (personal care—mental and physical health, and slowly figuring out my career objectives), and once these are on track, I think the others will follow suit.

No Comments 101 GoalsBooksCraftsfinancesfitnessHealthjob searchingLifestyle Challengesmoney saving challengesno spend challengesPersonal Developmentprofessional developmentspiritualitytravel

Level 10 life check-in

July marks the start of the second half of the year, and the start of the third quarter. That also means that it is time to take a look at my level 10 life, and see what changes have occurred since April (when I did my last level 10 life check-in).

Level 10 life check-in. Starting the third quarter of the year.

In case you haven’t heard of Level 10 life, basically what it is–you take ten different areas of your life (friends & family, personal development, spirituality, finances, social life, career, fun & recreation, giving & contributions, physical environment, and finally health & fitness) and you rate them on a scale of 1 to 10.

When you rate them, you’re not suppose to spend a lot of time thinking about it–you rate them as how are they are–not how you would like them to be.

I started doing this last year (when I first read about it), and I will admit that there really hasn’t been any huge changes in any given area. I’m lucky if I can get things up to a five or a six. There are some areas that have held constant at around a five (namely family and friends), and my lowest has been at a one (social life).

My long term goal is to try to get things up to a seven or an eight, and I’d prefer if I could also maybe get my social life up to a four or a five. Every area needs work, as this check-in has shown that things have slipped backwards just a little compared to my April check-in.

While I could try to focus on little things for all ten different areas, I’m thinking that I’m going to try to focus on just three or four areas. Therefore my goals will be:

In terms of personal development: Continue reading different non-fiction books and working through different e-courses.

In terms of spirituality: Meditating daily, and doing a daily tarot/oracle card reading (even if I don’t share them right away).

In terms of career: Working on my “reboot break”, my transition plan, and trying to network more.

In terms of health and fitness: Trying to get back into a workout routine (either doing a program all the way through, or creating my own hybrid calendar).

I think that these are the basically the three big areas I need to focus: health (physical and mental), career (figuring out the next step), and just working on becoming the best me possible. Once I have these headed in the proper direction, everything else should also head in the proper direction.

No Comments bullet journalLevel 10 LifePersonal Developmentprofessional developmentspirituality

Cancer New Moon Goals

So the moon is entering the first new moon phase for July and is transitioning through the Leo constellation today and tomorrow. July has officially started, and there are only 183 days left in the year (I’d personally like to know where February and March went).

So what are some of the things that one can focus on during the Cancer new moon?

            Family time (check in with relatives)

            Banish insecurity

            Get in touch with your caring and nurturing side

            Review your goals

            Take a hot bath

I also need to look to see what house the Cancer moon is moving through over the course of the new moon. Looking at things, Cancer is going through my ninth house (or my big picture zone). This is about adventure, travel, and personal development.

So what are some of the things that one can do during this time in regards to the ninth house?

            Find a way to explore the world.

            Read those books you know you should be reading.

            Do a personal development course.

            Manifest a new spiritual teacher.

            Think about what you have faith in—and what you don’t.

            Make a cyber pal on the other side of the world.

            Have something you’ve written published.

I think that it’s fitting that the universe is nudging me to continue to do personal development. I’ve realized over the past few weeks that one of my biggest roadblocks to doing anything is that I don’t like confrontations. I usually go out of my way to be a team player, and to fly under the radar. This could be from childhood, where I decided it was better to keep quiet than have a teacher correct my pronunciation of words (and I’ve realized that this is a massive trigger for me now as an adult). I know that I’m not happy with my position, and that change is needed—but at the same time I don’t want to rock any boats on my way out either.

So in terms of the things that one can do during this time in regards to the ninth house:

I am trying to plan a solo vacation abroad for the fall (possibly around my birthday). But I’ve only gotten as far as thinking about it. I would like to try to brush up on a foreign language (that way I can possibly travel somewhere where English isn’t the main language).

I am slowly working my way through my huge to-be-read list of books that cover both personal and professional development.

I have several different e-courses that I am going to slowly be working through (some are personal development areas, and others are professional development).

In terms of spirituality and what I have faith in—currently on hold.

Making a cyber pal on the other side of the world—I’m in several different groups that have people all over the world, so I think I’m good on this one.

Having a blog counts for publishing right?

Therefore my goals for the Cancer New Moon period are going to be:

1) Review, edit, and update my 12-month goals/plans for the different areas that I set out back under the Aries new moon.

2) Meditate nightly (even if it’s only for a couple of minutes).

3) Do a daily tarot/oracle card reading (even if I don’t share on social media right away).

4) Read at least one more non-fiction book (two-three would be great)

5) Start working through some of the different e-courses that I’ve bought over the past two years.

No Comments AstrologyNew Moon GoalsPersonal Developmentspirituality

Weekend Reflections: where I’m at in terms of my new twelve month plans.

**Disclaimer** I am not in the healthcare profession, if you are in need of medical (or mental) help—please see a licensed healthcare professional. The following are just my thoughts, feelings, and ways I think I can deal with my issues. Again—if you have issues, please see a licensed healthcare professional**.

Spent part of the weekend doing some serious reflection, and have come to the realization of several things:

            I need to get better at time management (especially on the weekends, when I really don’t have my day structured that much). I realize that I could have the traffic coming to the blog higher, if I actually got posts written and posted on a regular schedule—instead of the semi-regular, sporadic schedule I’ve been doing.

            Also having better time management, means that I could probably also be looking at different career tracks that are in the free-lancing and consulting areas (instead of looking for the just general nine-to-five jobs).

            I would also have the time to dedicate to crafts and other projects or things I want to get accomplished.

            I have also become my own worse enemy in terms of getting into the best shape of my life. I have allowed myself to use just about any excuse for not doing my workouts in the evenings, and before anyone comments that I could be doing them in the mornings—right now I’m barely getting my seven and a half hours of sleep, and therefore I’m not sacrificing that just to get a workout in first thing in the morning.

            This one is also tied into the time management need as well—there are only so many hours in the evening before heading to bed, that I probably could be making better use of them, then how I’ve been using them.

            I also need to find better ways of dealing with my stress and anxiety. I have found myself going to the little market on campus and buying several different sweets and candy bars (that will either last me the day, or a couple of days depending on my stress/anxiety levels).

            The stress and anxiety have been issues that I really should have been dealing with years ago. I have a pretty good idea where a lot of my anxiety issues (tests, driving, and to some extent social) have come from (childhood can suck at times), and the stress is due in part to internalizing how I feel instead of just letting it out (probably would have had more issues in school if I vocalized how I felt at times). So those two issues have probably lead to some health issues (indigestion and upset stomach) that I also need to find better ways of dealing with (then taking over the counter medications and trying to ignore them).

So how can I start to address and manage these issues (I won’t say overcome and get rid of—because I know that having that mindset can set me up for failure)?

In terms of time management—I need to ask myself what tasks/items am I doing (or can I be doing) that are (or can be considered) beneficial for the future me.

Also I probably should look into the different apps/web pages that allow you to block certain pages to help increase productivity (I know that I do spend way to much time on social media).

Also I should ask myself—what tasks am I doing during the day at work that are actually going to be helping me move forward (and not actually helping move someone else forward). This might be a little more problematic, as I’m sure that there are at least one or two people that won’t be happy if I start to figure out other things to do that I deem more important then they do. In other words—I really need to start working on my individualized development plan (or my reboot break/transition plan).

In terms of getting back on track in terms of fitness and nutrition—there are several things that I can do:

            Have my bedroom clean and the workout equipment off to the side. That way once I’m done with a few evening chores, I can put on my workout clothes, stream the workout program and get it done.

            Not compare myself to others. This has been a hard one for me (especially the last few years that I’ve gained the weight back and the negative mind set).

            If I need to take a walk at lunch (due to stress or anxiety), I will try to have my small digital camera on me so that I can practice my photography skills (instead of going to spend money on candy).

            Also when needed—take my journal and go for a walk; then find a quiet area where I can sit and reflect on what is potentially causing my anxiety or stress to occur. Sit and try to write for at least five to ten minutes and then head back to the lab. Hopefully this will help me get a handle on the stress and anxiety.

            Get back into the habit of trying to mediate for at least three to five minutes every night before reading.

            Try to pack my shakeology (and supplements) to take to work and have it as either part of lunch or a snack. This will help me work back up to having it as part of breakfast.

So I know what I need to do in order to get myself back on the correct trail—patch some things that weren’t working, and rework some other things. I’m now going to picture my journey moving forward in one of two ways: I’m hiking and I will need to look for things to help me on my way; or I’m on a boat at sea, and I need to find unique ways of patching little holes in the boat to ensure that I can make it to the next island/land formation.

No Comments fitnessHealthLifestyle Challengesmoney saving challengesPersonal Developmentprofessional developmentspirituality

Oracle Card Review: Sacred Rebels Deck

So during the month of February I decided that I was going to use the Sacred Rebels Oracle deck (I also got this deck out in Salem last October, along with the unicorn deck). This is a deck that will take a little bit more time to get use to using, as it doesn’t just address the emotions, but also a little bit of the mindset behind certain behaviors. So I will admit that there were times that I kept shuffling the cards and drawing until I felt comfortable with the message—I know that I should have worked with the first message, and this is something that I’m going to be working on in the future. Possibly by doing two different readings (ones that I post, which will come from possibly a different deck; and then another reading from the sacred rebels deck) and working on incorporating the messages from both in my life.

So the Sacred Rebels Oracle deck has forty-five different cards that cover a wide range of thoughts and emotions. Out of those forty-five cards, there were seven that I either didn’t pull or I reshuffled on (without making note of them). With the remaining thirty-eight cards, the number of times they showed up ranged from once up to six times. The cards that showed up the most were:

Inner Trust (4 times)

Inspiration (6 times)

Follow your own rhythm (4 times)

Shock of the new (6 times)

Diving for light (4 times)

Going beyond normal (4 times)

Dream a beautiful dream (5 times)

Seeing the true you (5 times) The other thirty cards showed up one to three times throughout the month. So lets look at some of the readings that I did during February.

February 2nd Oracle Card Reading

On the second, I did a simple three-card spread. Sometimes people use this as a past, present, future read or asking about a certain question. For the most part during February I was doing a three to four-card spread to have an idea of what the following day might be bringing.

The three cards that were drawn on the second were: 14) going beyond normal, 23) defend to the end, the worthwhile, and 29) seeing the true you. So as many may know—I’m also starting to look at transitioning from academia to industry, and that is one thing that the card could be referring to—the safe would be staying in my position, or finding another academic position (that probably doesn’t pay all that well, and the duration is questionable as well) or step out of my safety zone and go into industry (or some other direction other than what I’m currently doing). The second card refers to standing your ground for what you believe in (and that is especially important in today’s society with the way the world is going). The final card is a gentle reminder that while it is important what others think of us—those reflections don’t define who we are—we define who we are and that we need to start looking at our own mirrors and not the mirrors that others hold up to us.

February 13 Oracle Card Reading

On the thirteenth, I did another three-card spread and those three cards that were drawn were: 38) restore and replenish; 3) inspiration; and 6) shock of the new. With the restore & replenish card, basically the universe is telling you that you need to a change. The same routine is only going to give the same results. It also lets us know that at times we’re going to fast and hard that it is also time to slow down and listen to our bodies and inner voices. Inspiration is almost self-explanatory. There are so many ideas and thoughts that bounce around in our heads that we need to take time daily and write them down. Some may be good, some may be bad—but if we don’t write them down we will probably forget about them all by the end of the day. This is one thing that I’m trying to do daily—write down both ideas and things that I’m grateful for (no matter how silly they would probably seem to other people). The final card is a reminder that nothing really stays the same, and new opportunities could present themselves in unexpected ways

February 17 Oracle Card Reading

On the seventeenth, I did a four-card spread, and the cards drawn were: 18) spirals of manifestation; 42) the word wants to be written; 39) free from judgment, free to love; and 16) what you want, wants you. So the spirals of manifestation reminds us that we may be closer to our goals/dreams than we think we are and that we should continue working towards them. “The word wants to be written” card is a little deceiving when one pulls it for the first time—it’s message is to be true to yourself, and uncover your path by remembering who you are (not who others think you should be). While it can also resonate with creative projects, the biggest project is listening to the inner voice and remembering what makes you smile, happy, and figuring out how to incorporate all of that into the crazy world we live in today. The free from judgment, free to love reminds us that self love/care is important, and that it is perfectly fine to be in tune with our emotions and wanting to help others, but at the same time we should guard against those who want to take advantage of that. The final card states that we should trust in what we truly want, and if we’re unsure of what we truly want we should enjoy the process of exploring the things we enjoy. Only by either truly knowing what we want, or exploring different areas of ourselves can we actually find ourselves on the correct path.

February 20th five card spread

Then on the twentieth I did a five-card spread in the pattern of a cross (and that is only because that is how the cards talked to me that night). The cards that I drew included: 6) shock of the new; 14) going beyond normal; 17) what is already with you; 15) big bold vision; and 44) visions of life beyond death. So two of the cards I’ve already talked about a bit (shock of the new and going beyond normal), though in the combination with the other cards, they can take on a slightly different meaning. In terms of “what is already with you”—we (usually) have what we need to make a change in our lives—we can change our major, move, start looking for a new job, or whatever—we just have to believe in ourselves (as not believing in ourselves is usually the biggest obstacle to overcome). This is still something that I struggle with in terms of my job search—I know that I have it within me to make the transition, but at times I let the negative voices have a bigger voice than what I should (and this is something that I try to work on conquering on a daily basis).  The “visions of life beyond death” is another card that can be a little deceiving when one pulls it for the first time—it’s message is to take another look at things/situations and try to truly see what they mean to you (see what is actually there instead of what you perceive to be there). Also to remember that it’s easier to look through joyful, happy emotions than it is through fear, anger and darker emotions.

One of the things that I’ve noticed this month in using the cards is that I’m being reminded that I’m here to live life for myself and not others. It is time to start being true to myself (in terms of both spirituality and life in general), and that my “perfect 9-5” job is out there, and I just need to find some calm and quiet time to get in touch with my inner self and voice to be able to hear what that position is. This will be a deck that I use again this year (possibly as early as September or October) and I’m sure I will get more comfortable with the interpretations and readings the more often I use the deck.

No Comments Astrologyoracle cardsPersonal DevelopmentPhotographyprofessional developmentspirituality

Leo Full Moon Goals: A Review of January’s full moon

So we’re well into the year—tomorrow marks the second full moon (and depending on whom you listen to, it will either be back through the Leo constellation or entering the Virgo constellation). I’m going to go with the assumption that the moon is transitioning through each constellation during both the new moon and the full moon periods. That means that tomorrow, the moon should be entering the Virgo constellation.

So that means, that it is time to look back at the goals that were set for the Leo full moon period last month, and determine how I did with each goal.

So my goals for the last full moon were:

  1. Continue to try to workout daily
  2. Continue working on my transition plan. I more or less have part of my why down (why I’m in science and research in general)—I just need to work on why I want to leave academia for industry, figure out the companies, interact more on linkedin and so forth.
  3. Start working on some craft again (whether it’s photography, knitting, starting to make jewelry, or just coloring in a coloring book).
  4. Mediate nightly, and remember that if I keep putting one foot in front of the other, change will come—but I have to work towards the change and not wait for it to come to me.

So how did I do with each one?

In terms of working out daily, I have more or less managed this with the one or two rest days on the weekends. I haven’t totally gotten to where I do a different workout each day (I have realized that if I haven’t hit my step goal for the day, I’m going to put on a workout program that will allow me to almost hit the goal by the end of the workout (or surpass it)), and then I know that by bedtime I should have my steps in. I am going to try to start varying the workouts again (especially to get in more strength training), as I continue to try to be a little better than yesterday in terms of fitness.

In terms of my transition plan, I’ve realized that I have been letting indecision and fear of failure keep me spinning in circles. I have an idea of at least one biotech hub (mainly Boston) that I wouldn’t mind moving back to. I’m also thinking of possibly St. Louis or Indianapolis for the Midwest area, and then also possibly Washington DC. I know there are hubs on the west coast—but they’re about double the price of being in Boston or Washington DC—so I think I may stick east of the Rocky Mountains.

In terms of crafting, this is something that I’ve fallen behind on. I’ve been trying to do my daily photography challenge, but with cold weather and it barely getting light by the time I leave to catch the bus this has been difficult (since I decided that I shouldn’t just be posting pictures of the animals or tarot cards all the time [though yes I know that is basically my instagram posts right now]). I may try to continue working on my afghan as I would like to have that finished before I possibly move in the summer/fall/winter.

I have been trying to mediate nightly, though at times it may just be laying on the acupuncture mat for 3-5 minutes trying to clear my mind and relieve the tension in my back and shoulders before going to bed. There may gave only been one night this past month that I didn’t mediate, and that was due to be extremely sore my workout and I wasn’t sure if I could a) get down to the floor, and if I could get down b) I wasn’t sure I could get off the floor.

So out of the four goals, the only one that I really didn’t make a lot of progress on was the crafting goal. This will probably always be on the list (either on a full/new moon list or working it’s way back into a weekly habit tracker list), that way I can have a daily reminder that there should be a balance between life and work, and relaxing is actually something that is good for me.

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Oracle Deck Review: Oracle of the Unicorns

So one of the things that I have decided to work more on cultivating is my spirituality. Note—I said spirituality and not religion. I don’t believe in organized religion, or the idea that you have to be threatened with the thought of eternal damnation to be a good person. If you need that threat to behave—you have moral issues in addition to spiritual issues.

Depending on my mood (and possibly people around me), I fluctuate between saying that I’m a pagan/wiccan and I’m an atheist. The last time I actually set foot inside a church was back in 2001 for my older brother’s wedding. My main criticism of organized religion is that they all argue that one is better than the other, when in truth they’re all the same (just slightly different forms) and no matter what—we all bleed the same.

So in terms of cultivating my spirituality more, I’ve decided that I’d do a couple of different things: 1) to read more books on different aspects of spirituality (there are probably a good half a dozen on my personal/professional development book list), 2) build my own pagan/wiccan altar, and 3) do a daily tarot/oracle card reading (which may or may not be posted on social media). I think that there have only been probably two or three days this year that I haven’t posted my evening oracle card reading.

In terms of the daily card readings, I have also decided that each month I will try to stick with one oracle/tarot card deck. Currently I have like six different decks in my room (and another three or four in my storage unit). Card readings have always fascinated me, in that it’s a way of seeing what the universe has in store for us, and to possibly get another view to a question.

So last month’s deck that I used as the Oracle of the Unicorns (which I bought out in Salem last October when I was there on a mini-vacation). I have always been fascinated by the idea of supernatural creatures (and I don’t mean the horror show variety), but ones that have both a human side and an otherworldly side (I guess that is one reason why I’m drawn to paranormal romances as well). So back to the cards—January was the month of the unicorn for me. This was the second month of using oracle cards for guidance (December was using the enchanted spell oracle cards), and wisdom.

So the oracle of the unicorns has forty-four cards in the deck, and over the course of January, only two cards weren’t drawn in a reading (either privately or ones posted on Instagram). Of the other cards, the number of times ranged from a single drawing to eight times over the month. The cards that showed up the most in the drawing included:

Adventure (8 times),

Passion (8 times),

Strength (8 times),

Freedom (7 times),

Prosperity (6 times),

Imagination (5 times),

Intuition (5 times),

Miracles (5 times),

Patience (5 times),

Rebirth (5 times), and

Trust (5 times). The others (other than leadership and beloved) showed up between one and four times, throughout the month.

So let’s look at some of the readings that I did last month:

January 9th Spread

So on the 9th, the spread stated that adventure and change are still on the horizon, though it is also a time for self compassion and forgiveness. Strength and passion will also see you through the process as well. One of the things that I am trying to work on this year, is replacing the negative self-talk with more positive self talk (more compassion towards myself). Adventure is pretty self explanatory—the world is a large place, and we really shouldn’t stay in just a small area of if (though now traveling is expensive—but one should try to do at least one trip a year; preferably to somewhere they haven’t been before).

The passion card refers to more than just doing what you love—it also refers to taking care of yourself. Again this is something that I’m working on this year. Though my methods may go against the norm, but I’m going with moderation (still having snacks [i.e. chocolate and candy], and not putting a label on food [good vs bad]), and doing some type of exercise at least six days a week—a rest day is always good).

The strength card is referring to the fact that life will always be testing us, and that we can get through it to the other side stronger than what we started. The “main test” this year is my transition from academia to industry, and finding my footing again in terms of getting into the best shape of my life.

January 16th pyramid reading

So on the 16th I decided to do a pyramid reading using the cads. I was thinking on another question in terms of my job search (the why), and got quite a bit of information from the unicorns. They were urging me to remember what excites me about science, but at the same time listen to my inner voice and be in the moment. There will be more networking on the horizon and a new path will be forged and support from other will help on the way.

The awareness card reminds us that only when we are truly living in the moment do we actually feel peace and security—and that our guides are watching over us and that things are happening for a reason. The passion card showed up again in the pyramid—showing that it has a firmer foundation when you surround yourself with liked minded individuals who are also seeking to grow. But at the same time you need to listen to your inner voice and trust your instincts (intuition).

The rebirth card showed up in the spread. This unicorn urges you to shed what no longer is of use to you, so that you can continue growing into the person you were meant to be. The support and friendship cards showed up to remind us that we don’t have to do everything alone, that there are people who support us in our journeys and to surround ourselves with them.

January 20th spread

This was a reading that I did right around the time of the Leo full moon, and I was also trying to reflect back on different areas of my life. I noticed that the unicorns were urging me to slowly start stepping out of my comfort zone so that I could grow and reinvent myself this year. I had stated that while change can be scary, its better than being stuck in a job you don’t love and one that doesn’t offer that much growth.

So again the passion card showed up in the spread, as well as the rebirth card. In addition to the oracles of celebration, flow, and expansion.

The oracle of celebration reminds us to look for even the smallest achievements and successes that we’ve been having (for me at times that means getting through the work day without actually saying what is on my mind), and that if we remain positive, we will be reward with positive outcomes as well.

The oracle of flow reminds us that somethings aren’t meant for us and that once we realize that and surrender the outcome things become much easier to navigate. All you can do is your best, and once the day is done—the day is done. No one should be trying to repeat and correct days that they had already done their best on.

The oracle of expansion is reminding us that we need to spread our wings and soar. Once that happens we can share our magic with the world, and maybe just maybe start making the world a better place for all of us.

January 23rd reading

Adventure is still on the horizon, but as always there is an obstacle in the path, but strength and believing in myself will see me through to the other side. Action, self love, and believing in dreams will also see me through.

So the adventure and strength cards showed up again in today’s spread. The main obstacle to my transition is my negative thoughts and doubts about what I actually want to be doing in my next career. The unicorns are saying that I’m ready for taking that step—I just need to believe in myself and take that first step. In addition, I need to practice self love and realize that I’m not going to look like others even once I get into the best shape of my life—but that I need to love myself now and realize that getting into shape isn’t to punish or change, but to honor myself by being able to do things that I’ve wanted to do (but haven’t due to the fact that I’m out of shape).

Also I’m reminded that there are divine powers that are watching over me, and that at the right time my “prayers” or requests will be answered by the universe.

January 24th spread

The unicorns said that change is still on the horizon, and that hard work, patience and imagination will get me there; along with help from friends and mentors.

The oracle of patience is to remind us that it is okay to slow down every once in awhile—if we do hard work, put in the effort, there are times when all you can then do is wait (i.e. after a job interview) to see if the fruits of your labor paid off. The oracle of growth is reminding us that having a mentor (or several mentors) can always help the process go a little quicker as well.

The oracle of imagination is there to remind us not to neglect the other half of our selves—the side that loves imagining new things, ideas, creations, and so forth. In addition the healer showed up in the spread, to remind that we all have gifts to share with the world.

So these were just a few of my evening readings from last month. As I continue on my spiritual path, I’m slowly realizing that there are some decks that make it easier to share the insights, while other decks seem to be a little more personal in the readings and interpretations. The unicorn deck is one deck that I will be going back once I’ve cycled through all of my decks.

Also once I have my wicca/pagan altar built, the guidance of the cards may pop a little more than what it’s currently doing (as my current reading spot is on the rug in my bedroom).

If you are looking for an oracle deck to start using yourself for inspiration and guidance, this is one (of probably many) that I strongly recommend.

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Groundhog’s Day, Imbolc, or both?

So today is February 2nd. It marks the midway point between the winter solstice and the spring solstice. For wiccans and pagans, today is known by a couple of different names—Imbolc, Oimelc (“ewe’s milk”), the ancient Egyptians called today Feast of Nut (celebrating the birthday of the goddess Nut), and the ancient Romans called this time Lupercalia.1 In more modern times, we refer to day as Groundhog’s Day. The day that a rodent will declare if it’s six more weeks of winter or six weeks until spring.

I’ve always found that to be funny—because no matter how you look at it, it’s still six weeks until the official start of spring. Yes, there might still be some winter temperatures and weather during that six weeks (and we’re probably going to be seeing more winter weather lasting longer due to climate change), but the days do start to get a little longer, and stay a little warmer.

This year it’s been “predicted” that it will be an early spring—in other words, it was probably cloudy when the groundhog “came” out of its burrow and didn’t see it’s shadow.2 The animal seeing it’s shadow and predicting the weather, has been around for a long time—I guess it’s more “humane” to make use of a rodent, then trying to lure out a bear or other large animal to see what they’d “predict.”2

While I’m ready for the spring temperatures and longer days, I will miss the atmosphere of curling up with a blanket and book on the weekends, or working on my latest knitting project (which I’m hoping to have finished sometime this year). Though it will make it also a little easier doing the walks at Boomer Lake on the weekend if the temperatures aren’t in the twenties or teens (with windchills even lower).

Happy Groundhog’s Day or Happy Imbolc Day (depending on what you practice, and believe in).

I’ve added in the reference to the Imbolc image here as well, as I noticed it doesn’t show up all that well on the picture.

  1. https://www.thoughtco.com/history-of-the-pagan-holiday-imbolc-2562118
  2. https://www.vox.com/2019/2/2/18208025/groundhog-day-2019-punxsutawney-phils-forecast
  3. Images: Imbolc ©: https://www.zazzle.com/imbolc_candlemas_wiccan_sabbat_poster-228253221317806686
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Review of Cancer Full Moon Goals

Well January is off and running. Today and tomorrow (depending on where you are in the world) marks the first full moon of the year—and a lunar eclipse as well. Now the lunar eclipse is suppose to be visible from North America, which is great—but when the temps are dipping down into the teens around the time the eclipse is suppose to take effect—I’m probably going to sleep this one through and wait another four years for the next one. Now I know that’s not the way one really should be doing things—but I haven’t played with my camera on a tripod (which I would need to use in the dark)—so until I have better practice with it—I’ll just like everyone else’s pictures.

So looking back at the full moon from last month (which was right around the time of the winter solstice), I had made a small set of goals for the ringing in the New Year. Tonight is the time to look back at them and reflect on how I did with each one.

So my goals for the this full moon period will include:

  1. Do both a nightly tarot card reading and meditate nightly (even if it’s only two or three minutes).
  2. Update various goal posts (101 goals in 1001 days; Level 10 life)
  3. Start planning out my transition plan for the spring
  4. Read at least one more personal/professional development book
  5. Get through at least one more mini personal/professional development courses
  6. Renew at least two professional memberships

How did I do with each one?

1—In terms of doing a nightly tarot card reading, I think there may have only been one or two nights during the holiday break that I didn’t do one. I’ve been pretty good this month in doing a tarot/oracle reading. In fact I’m planning on posting at least one update on the blog on my tarot card readings (since this month I’ve switched and am using the Oracle of the Unicorn deck instead of the Enchanted Spell Oracle deck). I have been doing a nightly mediation session (which right now mainly consists of lying on my acupuncture mat and quieting my thoughts).

2—I did update both my Level 10 life goal and the 101 goals in 1001 days post at the beginning of the month. I actually should look back at both and see how I’m doing in terms of meeting the different areas of life.

3—I have been slowly working on my transition plan. I need to get a little better at actually planning things out, but I’ve made a little momentum forward in terms of figuring out my why, and starting to figure out the most logical ways for networking.

4—I’ve actually managed to finish a couple of books so far this month:

            Move Your Æ Ash: Know, Grow, & Show Your Career Value by Paul Carney

Anti Goals: Find Success by Knowing what to avoid by Kevin Wagonfoot

Power Up Your Self Talk: 6 Simple Habits to Stop Beating Yourself Up and Reclaim Your Life by Michal Stawicki

Anti-Debt: A guide to personal finance, getting out debt and building a money plan for our life by Kevin Wagonfoot

5—I’ve made it through one of the “courses” that I bought on Udemy in terms of trying to figure out the best strategy for job searching. There was one useful thing that I got out of the course that I am going to start trying to implement in my job search (mainly in terms of trying to figure out “stories” to have on the interviews to show case having the skills that they want).

6—This was one that I haven’t gotten around to doing yet. One reason is that with the government shutdown—I’m leery of travel, mainly because I don’t want to add to the headache of the people who have to work without being paid. Also with it being the beginning of the year—I’m trying to pay down the credit cards and not really add a huge amount to them, and lets face it professional membership prices aren’t cheap.

I’m proud that I’ve managed to meet most of the goals that I made during the winter solstice last month. I know that I’m not perfect, and going forward I need to be asking myself: How is this helping me—is it mentally, physically, spiritually, or financially helping or could it be more of a hindrance. 2019 needs to be the year of change, and growth—which means slowly stepping outside of my comfort zone to become the person that I know I can become.

No Comments AstrologyFull Moon GoalsPersonal Developmentprofessional developmentspirituality

Photography Challenge: Day 1

So I’m going to be trying to restart my photography challenge–that means taking a picture everyday for at least the next 365 days (I’m aiming at trying to complete a one year challenge to begin with). The subject of the photos will vary either daily or hopefully weekly. Also depending on my schedule I may end up doing a weekly review if I run out of time in the evenings trying to post them on the different social media pages (or they may even vary on the different platforms).

One of the photography subjects is going to be tarot/oracle cards. Currently I have six different decks (not counting the three or four that I have in my storage unit). I’m thinking that I’m going to do daily (or every other day) readings for a month from each set–though around the full moon, I might do the readings from a particular deck (even if it isn’t that decks “month”). I’m also going to be doing two readings at the end of this month with two different decks.

The first deck that I’m using is the Enchanted Spell Oracle Deck. Tonight I decided to do a crescent moon reading to get an idea of things to come both this month and in the coming year. The cards that I pulled for the reading are telling me that I need to figure out creative ways of generating abundance–though I need to figure out what I consider abundance first, I also need to guard against draining energies of other people, and to have patience and to know that change is coming.

I’m glad that when I’ve been doing readings over the last few months (though not as often lately as I should have been doing) and that no matter what deck I’ve been using–rebirth and change have been a common theme. This means that changing directions in my career is the correct decision–now I just need to figure out what that directional change is going to be.

I open myself up for guidance from the universe and it’s teachers (be they unicorns, dragons, or other mystical creatures). 2019 will be the year of change, and new adventures and dreams.

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