Forgiving the Unforgivable

What does it mean to truly forgive somebody, on every level and for everything? I used to think that I had a great capacity for forgiveness and that, over the years, I had developed a deeper level of compassion for those that had slighted me, understanding that they are often operating out of an unresolved pain or trauma. However, my belief in my abilities was shattered and dramatically changed after watching the movie The Shack.

The film, based off the book by William P. Young, follows the journey of Mack Phillips who spends a weekend with a trio of individuals, each personifying God, at an old shack in the woods. The story takes place after a man called, “The little lady killer” kidnaps and murders Mack’s youngest daughter while the family is on a camping trip. While the rest of the family attempt to move through the pain, Mack falls into a deep depression that spurs doubt regarding his beliefs. The topics of forgiveness, judgement and love are discussed in a whole new way and eventually brings Mack back to peace, healing and a deeper level on his personal beliefs, changing him forever.

Watching this movie was an eye-opening experience that left me questioning how deep my level of forgiveness was. Did I truly forgive everyone with an open heart? Even if it was something unforgivable?

Every painful moment can be traced back to an initial heartache or trauma someone has endured, usually at the hands of another. The root of this suffering is often not easily visible to the person experiencing the pain. Yet, if we are willing to step back and see the entire story, the reason someone might have wronged us becomes clear. While this doesn’t condone behavior or activity that goes against social and moral conduct, it offers us the opportunity to be more compassionate and objective when forgiving someone, being careful to not get caught up in the energy of their story. If we are willing to step back and look at the bigger picture, we find that, while each of us is unique, we are not all that dissimilar.

As expressed in The Shack, we were made to love and forgive. That is our legacy to the world. Love is the answer to all things and the greatest gift we can give one another. But the first step to giving love is receiving peace. And how is it possible to receive peace? By freeing ourselves with forgiveness and approaching all situations with the same compassion and wisdom we would like to see in others. I encourage you to break the chains of resentment and find a way to peace, in all of your relationships, even if it means forgiving the unforgivable. As my mentor Judy Goodman has taught me, forgiveness doesn’t mean condoning what someone has done, it’s about freedom & peace. You deserve to have peace in your life! Only then will we be on track to living the life we desire — a loving, joyful and fulfilling one.

Make Every Moment Count!

Mindfulness as a Path to Self-Care

While out walking the other day, it seemed like I had just stepped into the perfect day. The sun was shining, a gentle breeze was blowing and birds were singing as my thoughts wandered to the topic of mindfulness as a path to self-care. While self-care and mindfulness are not new topics, both still offer a greater shift in perspective when we choose to dive deeper into the practice of caring for our mind, body and spirit.

Many times, self-care only captures our attentions while we are on vacation or out of town on some far away trip, miles away from the typical stresses of everyday life. Self-care is often placed at the very bottom of a never-ending list of things to do. Meanwhile, busy work and being overly connected take center stage in our lives, drowning out our body’s cry for some major tender loving care.

But how important is it to devote time to ourselves? Can we really find moments in our already overbooked schedules and hectic lives to develop a solid routine of self-care?

When the topic of mindfulness finally does surface above the daily noise, it is often thought we need to have a serene place, void of distractions to develop a state of awareness with everything around us and, most importantly, with ourselves.  However, cultivating mindfulness as part of a self-care regimen can take place anywhere, regardless of what is going on around you. The advantages of this practice can be immense.

Science has now proven the wide range of benefits derived from practicing a state of mindfulness as a path to self-care. These benefits include…

  • Reduction in anxiety and stress
  • Improved cognition
  • Elevated happiness, contentment and gratitude
  • Increased immune function
  • Boost in memory
  • Improved moods
  • Slowing of neurodegenerative diseases
  • Increased creativity
  • Lowered blood pressure

I would like to share with you a very simple mindfulness exercise that I use on a daily basis which only takes a couple of minutes.  It doesn’t matter if you are at your desk, just got off a phone call with a difficult client or you’re feeling generally overwhelmed. This practice can bring you back to center allowing you to focus on what is truly important — your inner peace.

Close your eyes (not while driving) and focus on your breathing.  Feel the expansion of your body with each inhalation and rhythmic flow as each exhalation leaves the body. Clear your mind. When thoughts arise without judgement, gently allow those thoughts to drift away while bringing your attention back to your breathing.

Initially, it might seem like a battle to win over the quiet moments of your mind, but with each practice it gets easier and the times that you experience peacefulness will last longer. In time, you’ll find that it’s extremely easy to drop into a mindfulness state and that those few moments allow you to recharge quickly.

This simple mindfulness tool has allowed me to remain centered and focused over the years even during a bustling workday. You see, it’s not about finding the perfectly quiet and serene place to refocus and find your peace. It’s about finding the mindfulness practice that is the perfect fit for you, plus getting in the habit of using that practice to improve your self-care if even for a moment.

Our minds, bodies and souls are always working hard, so show yourself some love and take a deep breath. Kick off your shoes. Find your center. I hope it brings you peace like it has for me.

 

Make Every Moment Count!

Making Every Moment Count with Marianne Pestana on The Self Improvement Show with Dr. Irene Conlan

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Make Every Moment Count with Marianne Pestana on The Self Improvement Show with Dr. Irene Conlan, LIVE TODAY, Thursday, March 16th at 12pm PDT/1pm MDT.

New books are published every day. Sometimes we see advertisements about them, get information about them in email or get a pop-up as we surf the net. We may see promotions on YouTube or interviews on the news with an author whose book caught on and is on the way to becoming a best seller or has already hit the top of the bestseller list. Most of us don’t think about what it took to make that happen—the coaching, publicity, bookings, book signings, radio show appearances, and YouTube videos. It takes a lot of work on the part of someone or a group of “someones” to make all of that happen. Our guest today is a literary publicist with clients who have hit the best seller list. She will talk with us about what she does to help her clients succeed in the very competitive literary world. What does it take to get your work noticed and sold? She makes every moment count and will help you learn how to do the same.

Click here to listen live!

The Self Improvement Show with Dr. Irene Conlan

Thursday at 12 Noon Pacific Time on VoiceAmerica Empowerment Channel

The Self Improvement Show was created because almost everyone wants to be better, do better, and achieve more, but we don’t always know how to do that. We aren’t looking for perfection. We are simply trying to improve in ways that allow us more happiness, contentment and success with some laughter along the way. We address issues common to us all and suggest useful tools that will help you tap into your strengths and your wonderful uniqueness. We think most self improvement is an “inside job” so we talk a lot about how to “go within” to make lasting changes. We talk to people who have struggled and won and have great stories to tell as well as those who live ordinary lives in extraordinary ways. The show is laid back, informative and down to earth. The welcome mat is always out and we invite you to join us.

Click here to visit The Self Improvement Show with Dr. Irene Conlan to learn more about her!

Finding Tranquility in the Moments

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With the accelerated energies on the planet, many people are coming face-to-face with issues that they have either not dealt with or lessons that need to be experienced in one degree or another.  With all of this taking place, there is great opportunity for personal development like never before and at the same time, there is also a lot of energetic chaos that feels more like blindly walking through a dense fog, unable to distinguish any path leading out.

Staying centered allows us to move through these transition points with grace, while finding tranquility in the moments offers a greater sense of peace. Developing a consistent practice of mindfulness eventually makes these moments of internal bliss last for longer periods of time.  Ultimately we become more focused on the miracles that each moment brings as opposed to the perceived chaos that surrounds us.

When we take personal responsibility for the world that we choose to live in, we realize that we are the direct creator of what we are experiencing.  The inner journey for peace starts with me, only then can it be reflected in the world around us.

Make Every Moment Count!

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John Gray PhD & Chetan Parkyn on Moments with Marianne Radio Show

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It’s all about relationships tomorrow on the Moments with Marianne radio show! Did you love Men Are From Mars, Women Are From Venus series? Tune in FRIDAY, March 3rd at 5am & 5pm EST for a special interview on Moments with Marianne with John Gray PhD as we discuss his new book Beyond Mars and Venus, followed by The Book of Destinies with Human Design creator Chetan Parkyn.
 
Moments with Marianne is heard at Dreamvisions 7 Radio Network and WMEX 1510AM Boston. Listen LIVE FRIDAY, March 3rd at 5am & 5pm EST by clicking here http://rdo.to/DREAM7
 
Beyond Mars and Venus with John Gray
John Gray is the author of the most well-known and trusted relationship book of all time, Men Are from Mars, Women Are from Venus. USA Today listed his book as one of the top 10 most influential books of the last quarter century. In hardcover, it was the #1 bestselling book of the 1990s. Dr. Gray’s books are translated into approximately 45 languages in more than 100 countries and continues to be a bestseller.
 
Dr. Gray has written over 20 books. His most recent book is Beyond Mars and Venus. His Mars/Venus book series has forever changed the way men and women view their relationships. He has appeared repeatedly on Oprah, as well as on The Dr. Oz Show, TODAY, CBS This Morning, Good Morning America, and others. He has been profiled in Time, Forbes, USA Today, and People. He was also the subject of a three hour special hosted by Barbara Walters. https://www.marsvenus.com
 
The Book of Destinies with Chetan Parkyn
Chetan Parkyn has been giving Readings to people of all walks of life and all nationalities for over 35 years. He has spent the past 23 years mastering Human Design. He is more than a leading practitioner of the system. As the author of the first major book on the subject, which has been translated into eleven different language versions, he has made it his mission to bring Human Design to the whole world. https://www.humandesignforusall.com

All You Need Is Love

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February often has us thinking of Valentine’s Day and romance, but are we truly in love with the most important person in our life?
 
Think of someone you love unconditionally. How often is that same level of care, affection and devotion showered upon yourself? Typically, this answer falls far short of what we would consider loving behavior. With the ever alive self-critic and stream of negative input from the environment that surrounds us, it’s easy to fall into self disparaging comments and develop beliefs that don’t serve us. Discussions of self-love is often met with the criticism that its narcissistic, self-absorbed or egoistical to dedicate such devotion to yourself, however this couldn’t be further from the truth.
 
A self-loving practice teaches us to accept ourselves as we are. Love those qualities that make us celebrate and smile as our feet hit the floor every morning and the shadow characteristics, shrouded in pain that cause us to cringe and take shelter from the world. When we honestly love ourselves, the knowledge contained within our heart demands that we treated ourselves as the worthy, loveable, deserving, respected and forever cherished host.
 
Without loving ourselves first, we have nothing authentic and lasting to give someone else other than a momentary facade and fleeting vision of what we desire to become. Find the truth within your heart and love yourself beyond compare!
 
Make Every Moment Count!
 
Marianne

New Beginnings

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As we start the new year, everything is about new beginnings. We often reflect on the upcoming year with anticipation, citing our intentions for the road ahead. How is it possible to show up in the world in a bigger way?
How can I make a greater impact in my community and lives of others? What are some of the ways that I can improve myself? These are some of the questions that come to mind as I look for new ways to move beyond the comfortable boundaries that my life continually encompasses me with.
 
 
“How can you know what you’re capable of if you don’t embrace the unknown?” – Esmeralda Santiago
 
 
What I’ve learned over the years, is when there is the willingness to be remain open to new ideas and opportunities, the magic of life tends to unfold in ways that we could have never predicted. I’ve discovered that by following my passion, being in gratitude and having faith in both myself and a Higher Source, miracles take place daily. My desire for you is that this New Year brings about all that your heart desires. Thank you for being a part of this great journey with me.
 
Make Every Moment Count!
Marianne

Open Heart

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One of the most difficult things to master is interpersonal relationships. We meet people from all walks of life that have experiences, challenges, wounds and wisdom that offers a different perspective from our own understanding. So often the stories that we create, our misperceptions and unclear communications can foster misunderstandings where none really exist. Recently I was reminded of this, and the lessons that I took away were priceless.

What I found was that when we are willing to open our hearts, it doesn’t just open us up to potential pain or heartache. For those that have the courage to look deeper, it gives us the opportunity for tremendous growth and freedom. This growth and freedom comes from being able to looking past our pains to the bigger picture for all involved. 

Be kind, for everyone you meet is fighting a hard battle – Plato

When we authentically show up in the world as a living example of our values and morals (without expectations or intentions of others to show up the same), we are in a place of personal power that no one can shake. This allows us to see how others truly are and interact based not in judgement of their pains, but with compassion for them.

How often is it in our day that we gracefully and kindly express what it is that we want in life? Are we honest in how we show up in the world and how we treat others? Are we being true to ourselves and what it is that we stand for? Not sharing common values, doesn’t make the other person bad, it makes them human.

When we are willing not to take things personally and step back far enough to see the perspectives of others, the lesson we take away is that we are all learning, growing and evolving in our own unique way.

I’ve been working with my mentor Judy Goodman to gain a greater understanding on this discussion. To read Judy’s recent newsletter that expands on this topic visit: http://www.judygoodman.com/Newsletter.htm and you’ll understand why many people describe Judy’s insights as beyond conventional wisdom.

Make Every Moment Count!

Marianne

How Our Perception Changes Our World

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With so much going on in the world, how we choose to perceive things seems to be more important than ever.  While putting on rose-colored glasses isn’t something that I would suggest, choosing to change our perception of the challenges we face gives us the opportunity not only to shift how we show up in the world, but also allows us the opportunity to view the outer world and our inner world with more compassionate and grace.  This discussion often has me thinking about this quote from the Dalai Lama:

We can never obtain peace in the outer world until we make peace with ourselves.

If we’re having a difficult time liking ourselves, how can we like those around us?  If we allow ourselves to fall into judgement or criticize those that are different, how can we love the uniqueness that we alone bring to the world?

The journey of developing and maintaining inner peace  traverses a road with no end, yet the journey itself offers new vistas, plateaus and valleys of who we really are. Thus granting us a deeper awareness and understanding that we truly are one, regardless of our outer world and differences.
Wishing you much peace, grace and love.

Make Every Moment Count!

Marianne