Monthly Archives: December 2014

Let Go and Let God

This post has moved to my official website, LisaFlemingLIVE.com!
CLICK HERE

155966_104919569677957_2132916594_n

“If I’m losing balance in a pose, I stretch higher and God reaches down to steady me.  It works every time, and not just in yoga.” ~Terri Guillemets

I find myself losing balance in and out of yoga lately.  Not shocking.  In the past 25 days I have made a decision to move out of the country, sold one of my businesses and some of my furniture and am working on selling the other, found my cats a new loving home, taught my last class at one of my studios, started this blog, met with over 30 different friends and family members to share my news in person, made plans to teach at another retreat in Nicaragua, and those are just the things I can remember.

I suppose that’s a lot to do in 25 days, but I have so much more!  I am overwhelmed.  I find myself just frozen in my apartment, staring, wondering how I will sell all of my things in the next 5 weeks, and wondering what it is I’m forgetting to ask or do. As excited as I am to go, I am equally as nervous and emotional.  Please don’t misunderstand me; I have zero doubt about this path I have chosen to take.  What’s about to happen has been a vision in my mind for so long, I couldn’t tell you when it began.  In fact, I’m still in shock that this is actually happening. What I do want to share is that I am human, and I’m willing to admit that I am all kinds of nervous.

Like the quote above, I do reach to God and my angels to calm me, to steady me, and to keep me moving forward.  I have felt this kind of force before in my life.  It feels like I am being moved by something more powerful than myself.  Things are moving so quickly that it can’t be anything but “meant to be.” In the past, those circumstances, although painful at the time, all brought me to something more beautiful.  Now, when I’m feeling the “push”, I stop fighting it and I remember to let God lead me.  “Let go and let God”, my mother has always told me.  It sounded so “cheesy” to me 20 years ago.

I finally understand.

I also understand that it’s ok to be nervous even when you’re happy. I understand that I will have the time of my life, while missing my family and friends back home in a way I’ve never experienced.  I understand that it will be so hot I won’t want to move some days, but I won’t have a car or air conditioning.  I understand it’s a third world country, and I will be without the safety of the American Justice System.  I understand there are giant insects that hide in shoes, and dirt everywhere.  I am ok with all of these things because I “let go, and let God”, and I let go of fear.  I also understand that not everyone feels the same.

Some have asked me what the point of this is. or why I want to leave home to live in another country, especially a third world country.  I answer that it has always been a dream of mine to travel, or because I want to LIVE and experience as many beautiful places as I can, and write and teach yoga and meet people.  What I don’t tell them is that I really don’t know.  I feel driven, pushed, guided and led to make this journey.  My past has proven that this drive I have is coming from something much bigger than my little human ego.  I believe I am led by my angels and God, and once I made the decision to go all the doors were opened.

My emotions are running high, I have a knot in my stomach about the work left to do, tears over the people I will miss, and I’m exhausted in every sense of the word, but I move forward.  To those who’ve expressed fear or worry for me and my travels please let that go.  For those who have warned me or even tried to stop me, please let that go.  Don’t even own your fear, Let. It. Go.  There are some who have shared all of the possible horrors that could happen to me on my trip, and I answer them that I refuse to live in fear.  There is no way a possible “what if” situation would keep me from experiencing the world and living my life.

We all have our own paths to take. 

When you don’t know which one is yours, “let go and let God.”  Stop thinking, start feeling, and have faith that you will live the life you love.  See what happens when you reach higher and let God steady you.  Maybe I’ll get to see you in Costa Rica!

 

 

 

 

 

 

Advertisements

The People!

This post has moved to my official website, LisaFlemingLIVE.com!
CLICK HERE

me  people Tyler

Oh my gosh, the people!

The people are why I am here.  It feels so good to say that.  My mother reminded me last night that I was at one time, not too long ago, feeling lonely, separate from all the other people.  I had forgotten that, but when she reminded me I felt those lonely feelings as if it were yesterday.  For a long time I had felt like I didn’t belong here, on Earth.  I was desperate to “go home”.  Home being Heaven.  I felt like I had no connection to other people, and that was a sad, sad feeling.  The idea of having to pretend I belonged here, for many more years to come, was painful.

Through my work with yoga and the chakras, I was able to work through that desperation and reconnect myself to my friends, family and place I called home, but that’s a topic for another blog.  This post is to share with you the connections I made with the people I met in Nicaragua, and how each and every one of them inspired me to take this chance I’m taking today.

First, there is Penny.  Penny Light is the Life Coach and beautiful soul who invited me to teach yoga on her Life Coaching retreat.  Because of her, I had the opportunity to meet so many incredible people in my short 8 days in Nicaragua. My friendship and connection to Penny was instantaneous, from the moment we first met on Facebook to the ten months later when we met in person.  I felt like I had known her my whole life.

That may be why, on the second day of our trip, I made a joke about moving in with her in Costa Rica and quitting my Ohio life. She turned my joke into an actual offer, and that set my mind (and anxiety) on overdrive.  Could I actually do that?! Sell my two yoga studios I worked so hard for, leave my parents and grandparents, sell my belongings, and what about my cats?!

Not intending to be serious, on our first day of our life coaching workshop, I mentioned the dream I’d always had of quitting work for a year and traveling to see the world.  Penny asked me why I couldn’t do that, so i started to list my reasons.  With each reason i gave, Penny and the group would reply with a solution.  I quickly realized that all of these years I had been listing the reasons and fears that stopped me from living my dream, but I had never gone any further than that.  I had never actually answered, or tried to come up with a solution to those fears or reasons.  That was the day I realized my impossible dream was possible.

From that moment forward I decided to live the rest of my trip in the idea that a decision had been made to never go home, and see how I really felt about making such a drastic lifestyle change.

The first thing I noticed was a lightness that had come over me.  I felt really, truly, happy, free, and powerful.  I felt creative, excited, and I missed my parents.  My cats were ok in my head.  I didn’t think much more other than about how I would support myself and my new travels I was silently planning.  Oh, and then the guilt, the fear of having to tell the people who raised me, befriended me, and my business partner with whom I still owed another 36 months of service to.  I think the best way to describe what I felt over the next few days was torn, excited, alive and tormented.

I know that when spirit is guiding us we feel joyful, positive feelings, and when it’s ego, we feel feelings like fear, guilt and shame.  I seemed to be feeling both at the same time.  So to help myself work through the decision making, I turned to “the people”.

I began talking to everyone I met about my next possible decision. I’d sit next to strangers at the bar and ask them questions like, “What’s your name? Where are you from? How long have you been traveling? Where’s your favorite place on earth? How do you do it?! Does your family support your travel?  How do you support yourself, or make a living to pay for your travels?”

The people I “interviewed” were not only willing to answer my questions, they were friendly, relaxed, and happy to give me all their answers plus extra bits of fascinating stories, ideas and tips for doing it myself.

There was Ryan, the nurse from Canada who saved $10,000 so he could spend a year in Australia, then worked picking grapes to make money for his next trip. Now he takes the entire month of November off every year to travel.

There was Tyler who was in his early twenties, and traveled alone, country to country, journaling and enjoying his freedom.  Tyler would make a good chunk of money life guarding in California, then travel until he ran out, and then he’d start over.  I started talking to him because he had a beautiful Hamsa tattoo on his arm.  I saw him journaling in a giant leather book in front of the 79 foot Jesus statue on top of San Juan del Sur, and thought he looked like he’d be willing to talk.   I could have talked to him about his adventures for hours.

The day we volunteered at the Barrio Planta Project  I met Dyani.  She is from the States, and started the school.  She and I got to talk later that night, and she was such an inspirational, strong woman.  I felt her power just talking with her.  No, it was not the tequila!

The children at Barrio Plant Project were making an impact on me without even trying.  I got to teach them yoga outside and afterwards we had to work through the language barrier to take them on a scavenger hunt through the city.  They were fun, full of excitement and adventure, and I got to feel like a child that day because of their kindness and willingness to do something new and take us with them.  There was so much happy crying and laughter both that day.

There was Stephanie (Chefanie), our chef at Nica Yoga, who showed up everyday with the sweetest of smiles and lightness of heart that made me want to hug her while she prepared the most, not (exagerrating) healthy and unbelievably good food I have ever had.  I would’ve paid any amount of money to ensure her a spot in all of my future retreats.  She was not “just our chef”, she had the heart and soul anyone would want to be around.

DeWitt.  He lives in Nicaragua, but is from Texas, with no accent. That’s an important detail about him.  That’s how we started talking.  He was in our house one day and I asked him where he was from because he sounded like me, no accent.  DeWitt is warm, loving and hilarious, while holding his professionalism steady.  He made sure we were all taken care of, and was a pleasure to be with.  When I wasn’t feeling well, he concocted some magic tea to help me sleep and ordered me not to speak to rest my sore throat. I told him he was special, and I meant it.

I met two young men on our boat cruise who were from Norway.  They both were in their year after graduation from college, as engineers.  They said in Norway they are not only encouraged to take one year off to travel before they start working, they are also in a program that helps them fund their travel!  Americans could learn a lot from them!  If we all saw the world before we dove into work, I think we’d all have minds and hearts more open and accepting of others.

On that same boat cruise, I met two business men from Holland.   They had a month of travel in their plans.  That’s what they do!  They didn’t understand why we would only get 2 weeks off a year.  I don’t understand that either!

Tim, worked at the Brewery.  He and his friends went down to Nicaragua one year during college and noticed they only had one type of beer down there.  Who better to notice that than college boys?  So they put it in their heads that Nica needed a brewery, and a few short years later, they made it happen.

The people on the retreat with me and Penny; Ali, Susan, Christin, Chris, Paul, Teri, Lara, Nick, Kate, and Jen. They all were inspirational to me.  Ali was on her biggest healing journey, Susan was setting herself to find love and financial security in herself, Christin and Kate, my soul sisters whose hearts and inner beauty were big enough to fill a room, Lara who made her fear her profession, Nick the world traveler in search of happiness not material, Chris, my very special friend who would give everything he had to help anyone else, Paul and Teri, the super romantic couple who never hid their love from anyone, Jen was already making the biggest changes of her life when we met, and of course Penny who has quit corporate to live in Africa with the lions – who better to coach me on my next chapter?!

I could go on and on, but the point….the point is coming.

The one thing all of these people said to me that was the same was, “What do you mean, ‘how do you do it?’ You just do it!”

Then I’d say something like, “No, I’m from Cleveland.  We don’t ‘just do it’ there.   We are lucky to get 2 weeks off for vacation, and not always back to back.  We also are taught to work until we die, or retire when we can’t go anywhere. This sort of living isn’t really encouraged where I’m from.”

So the more people I met, the more people I would talk to and converse with, the braver I got.  I realized it really IS possible, and it’s not even that big of a deal.  I realized I was surrounded with people who were not afraid to live.  I was surrounded by people who lived the way they wanted to, and didn’t think that was a big deal.  I realized I wanted to be around more of those people.  people who encouraged my dreams of world travel, and those who instead of feeding my fear, fed my courage, my inner strength, and my desire to really LIVE my life.

The people I was once afraid to connect with, had my attention.    There was no turning back.  I knew I was about to change my life, and I let go of the fear. What I didn’t know was that my people back home were going to be surprising me with their support and encouragement.  I don’t know why I doubted them, but I am ok with admitting I was wrong.

My mother told me she had a feeling I was going to come home and tell her I wanted to move to Costa RIca.  I hadn’t even told her that was my plan, she just used her mother’s intuition I suppose.  She said she’d be sad, but what an adventure, and how could she not support it if that was my plan?  My 90 year old grandparents said something like, “You get one life, you gotta do it if that what you want to do!”

My business partner told me she supported me 100%, and that she always knew I’d go off and do something like this.

Even my ex boyfriend told me that although it broke his heart, he was so happy for me to have this opportunity. He listened to my plans intently, and shared in my bittersweet excitement.  That is real love.

So, one by one, from the day I got home from Nicaragua on Dec 2, to today, Dec 22, I have met with friends, family members, students, teachers, and everyone close to me to tell them my news in person or on the phone, and every one of them has been supportive, encouraging, and excited for me in one way or another.  Even my father who doesn’t understand why i would leave my stable source of income, my studios, is happy for me, although sad for himself.  My parents are the best kind of parents.  They support me living my dreams and are selfless in the process.

The people! The people in my life; new, old, related, strangers, it doesn’t matter.  The people in my life have inspired me, encouraged me, and are supporting me on my own personal journey.  All in their own ways, all in their own perfect ways, and i appreciate every single one.

I am so blessed, and so very happy that I reconnected with “the people”, my people.

ryanchefanirTimpeople1

schooldewitthennessypeople4people3people6people7

Big Moments

This post has moved to my official website, LisaFlemingLIVE.com!
CLICK HERE

volcano

That’s me in front, carrying my wooden sled over my head.  The volcano is Cerro Negro, in Nicaragua.  The date was Sunday, November 30th, 2014.  I was born on a Sunday, in 1976.  Sunday is a holy day, and it’s also the day I was supposed to fly back to Cleveland after our retreat in Nicaragua.  I like to see the symbolism and signs in everything, it’s comforting to me.

It was meant to be. I had exactly 15 minutes, the day before this picture was taken, to get a hold of my travel agent via Facebook Messenger to see if she could move my flight back by one day.  Within that 15 minutes, and as we were driving away from the wifi, she confirmed my flight change, and I had committed to climbing a 2388′ volcano, the youngest in Central America, and still active. Very active.

Did I mention my fear of heights?

When this photo was taken I was having a moment with myself.  The wind was intense, and I went back and forth between being terrifyingly focused on not getting blown off the side of the volcano, and realizing my strength.  Not just the physical strength it took to climb that magnificent landmark, but the strength that comes from deep down inside.  The strength that showed up for me in all of my Lupus flares, in my divorce, in my weakest moments.  I realized on top of Cerro Negro that I had overcome almost all of my fears within the previous 7 days.  Then I had to pause and breakdown.

I realized that my past was my past.  In fact, I “heard” it.  Once again, spirit, God, gave me a message loud and clear; “My past is my past.  I don’t need to live in it anymore.  From here on out, this is my life, and I am going to LIVE IT.”

It was one of those moments where you feel like telling everyone what just happened, but I had lost my voice the day before, was really focused on not flying off the edge, and wanted to keep it to my self, in my heart, for a little while anyway.  I actually felt the experience of detaching from my past.  The only way I can describe what happened to me would be to compare it to the movies, when someone is dying and they see their life flash before their eyes.  I actually saw my most painful moments from childhood to my current 38 years, and put them to rest. “The suffering portion of the show is over folks, now on to the reward!” – would’ve been what the narrator of my personal imaginary play would have said.  I felt all of this and more, in less time than it took you to read about it.

I will never forget that moment.

I also will never forget how much I hated sliding down the side of Cerro Negro! I may be over my fear of heights, but not over my fear of speed!

At the bottom, I needed a moment, mostly to swear and shake off the pure terror, oh, and to just be on the solid, still Earth.   There was a boulder and a little tree, about the same height as me, and they were calling to me.  So I didn’t sit with my friends, I sat on the boulder and looked at the little tree growing out of the black lava rock, and I saw miracles.  I was very shaken up in that moment, embarrassed about my fear of sliding down when everyone else was having the ride of their lives.  Then, as I cringed, my friends came over to me.  Without teasing me, as I had expected, they just sat with me, hugged me, talked, laughed, and took silly pictures.  I felt supported,  I felt loved, and I felt even more strength than before.  I knew then that those were the type of people I want more of in my life.

There were a lot of “big moments” in Nicaragua, but this one was definitely the most powerful.  With fire under my feet, it makes the most sense that my solar plexus was tested, re-charged and fired up on top of beautiful Cerro Negro.

 

 

 

 

 

How it started

This post has moved to my official website, LisaFlemingLIVE.com!
CLICK HERE

lisa eyes

I suppose I should begin by explaining how I got “here”.
For as long as I can remember, I have wanted to take a year off of work to travel and see the world. It was an impossible dream. There were so many reasons not to do it. I was married, then I was going through a divorce, then I bought my first yoga studio, then I had a boyfriend with a son, then I broke up with him but bought a second studio. Then there were reasons such as; I’m the only child here for my parents, what if they need me? My grandparents are in their 90’s, what if they need me? I own 2 businesses, have 2 cats, need money, etc… There was always a reason not to go.

On October 18th I had a reading at our Intuition Night at the studio. My reader told me I’d be moving, moving in with someone, and my whole life would be changing. I told her there was no way I’d be moving, and I definitely wouldn’t be moving in with someone! My lease was up in February, and I’d just spent a lot of money redecorating my apartment. There was NO WAY.
I had a retreat planned in Nicaragua for November that was supposed to be paid for, but ended up requiring me to pay to go, even though I was teaching the yoga. I didn’t care how much it cost to go, I knew this trip was going to change my life. It was completely a spiritual hunch, I like to call it. The only thing I knew for certain was that this trip was going to be life changing.
On November 22nd I got on a plane and flew to Nicaragua. The retreat was 8 days of total life transformation. This was a life coaching retreat, and I was sure I’d be finding my answers to my questions about my next step in this life while I was there.

By the second day I knew it was time for me to live my big life dream of traveling the world, I just couldn’t see how it would be possible. So I started to work through the fears and doubts. Not just listing them, but answering them. Once broken down, they didn’t seem so big anymore. In fact, most of them seemed trivial.
Each day, waking up in the most beautiful country I’ve ever seen, I decided to live my days as though I was never going back to Ohio;
I met the most interesting people, and “interviewed” them, asking questions like; “How long have you been traveling?”, “How do you support yourself while you travel?”, :”How do you do it?!”
The general answer was, “You just do it!”. I’d always reply with, “No, we don’t ‘just do it’ in Cleveland. We work until we die, and if we are really lucky, we might get 2 weeks of vacation a year, back to back.”
However, the more people I “interviewed” the more I started to wonder why I wasn’t “just doing it”. After all, I’m single, my apartment lease is up in February, I can sell one studio, my car is 11 years old, and if I’m lucky, I could find a home for my cats and my partner may let me out of our 5 year contract.
What I did know was that I couldn’t stand the thought of being on my deathbed at the end of my life and never having taken the chance to travel on my own. The very thought of that made my sad, depressed, and sick to my stomach.
I read somewhere that when an idea is spirit driven, it feels good to the body. When an idea causes ill feelings, that’s an ego driven, fear based idea, and not one to follow.

So I knew, this was where I was headed next. On the road.
It was thrilling, exciting, and invigorating. The sense of freedom that flooded over me was like a breath of new life, and I felt alive in a way that I haven’t felt in years, since I had left my unhealthy marriage. However, just like that time in my life, I was confused. What was I thinking?! But I knew in my heart that this was it. It’s time to go.

My mother and I were on the phone one evening while I was in Nicaragua. She told me she had a feeling I was going to come home and tell her that I was going to move to Costa RIca. My jaw dropped. I had never told her that, in fact, I have never even been to Costa Rica! As soon as she said it, I felt like the door was open to tell her that that was exactly what I was thinking of doing. Lucky for me, my parents love me enough to not only let me go, even when I know they wish I’d stay home, but to encourage and support my dream to explore the world, and really LIVE.
That is when this crazy idea really started to take off. I mentioned it to the group I was with, and they helped my thought process through every question I needed answered. They were supportive people, loving and selfless people, and I never felt so at home with a group of complete strangers, as I did that week.

I came home on December 1st at midnight, talked to my partner on December 4th, signed the business over to her on December 5th, worked out the details December 6th, sold some of my furniture on December 16th, and found a home for my two cats on December 19th. December 19th was the day we told our staff at the studio, and also the day I found out I have a new home in Costa Rica, and another retreat in Nicaragua in February.

Things are moving quickly. That’s the way things work with spirit, there’s no time to waste when you’re doing things right. I have complete faith that God is guiding me, and always will, so when I let go and let God take over amazing things happen.
I am so touched by the people in my life. The encouragement and support I’ve gotten from everyone friends to grandparents, is overwhelming.
Tears flowed a lot tonight, with a houseful of friends I really felt loved.

I wondered how much I’m going to miss them being around the corner. I worried about my sanity for a few minutes, but remembered that I’m being led, and therefore, will be just fine.
I know it won’t be the easiest of my journeys, but it will absolutely be worth it!

The beginning…

This post has moved to my official website, LisaFlemingLIVE.com!
CLICK HERE

lisa eyes

 

I am so excited that I cannot sleep! I have a big announcement to make, but must hold it in for 7 more days, and it’s almost impossible to contain myself.
So to satisfy my urge to spill the beans, I have made a game out of it. Every day, from yesterday until December 10, 2015, I will be documenting my journey on Instagram and Facebook. One picture a day of me living my lifelong dream in some way, shape or form.

If you wish to follow me on Instagram, please find me as lisafleminglive

Here begins the rest of my life!