Five Ways to Present Your Best Self and Create Harmony in Your Relationships

Have you ever stopped to just listen to yourself?

Do you communicate well with others? Do you show love and support through the way you talk and act? Do you even recognize how you show up for yourself, and whether you are doing yourself a disservice in those moments? Consider the idea that when one chooses bad behavior, in part or in whole, it is a reflection of one’s character.

If you find yourself yelling at someone, saying things you regret, or barking foul language, you eventually will be remorseful. That is, of course, if you have a conscience.

Look, everyone has bad days, bad situations, and hard luck. I know I do. There are times when I’ve had regret on how I presented myself, what I’ve said, and what I’ve done. Although we all must move beyond those moments, forgiving each other, how we handle ourselves in those situations, and whether or not we realize our flaws, is what makes all the difference. Our future depends upon it.

Here are five ways to show up for yourself and salvage those relationships:

  1. Make a happier you. If there’s only one thing that comes from presenting yourself well, it is that you create a happier life for yourself. You do this by showing up for yourself; choosing your reactions. Since you’re more aware of what you say and do, you won’t get all worked up in the emotional end of a situation. You know how to think on your feet. Obviously, that doesn’t mean there won’t be pain in the process, but how you react to that pain can change the scenario dramatically. In time, you figure out how to make every situation work a little bit better.
  2. If you owe one, give it. With relationships comes disagreements; it’s normal for most people…and apologies soon follow. If you owe one, give it. However, open ears and an open heart can only hear the words “I’m sorry” so many times. The receiver must believe, without a doubt, that you are truly sorry, and that you understand how you hurt them. Then again, if this situation is one that continually happens, chances are your words will be ignored. The belief that things will change will not be an option.
  3. Create a plan and make a vow to shine. Make a vow to pay attention to yourself. Recognize your trigger points, ahead of time, and figure out what you can do to avoid potential conflict that comes your way. Remove yourself from negative conversations, and most definitely refrain from stirring the pot, so to speak. Promise yourself going into situations that you will show up in the best version of yourself.
  4. Look for the solutions. Take the time to look for positive remedies for when issues arise. Find ways to combat conflict without a negative tone. Being mature about the outcome can create solutions that you never thought of before now.
  5. Do your homework and make good choices. If you believe with all your heart that the relationship is worth salvaging, then go after it. If the connection was not meant to be, and is not important to your future, then let it go. Holding on to combative relationships, or the resentment, remorse, and bitterness that comes with the territory will only destroy you in the process.

In the end, relationships created out of love or respect usually overcome the small details of petty issues. Connections that don’t have at least one of these two ingredients, love or respect, may very well discontinue once conflict arises. Even with the words of apology, there’s a strong possibility that one or the other may not want to continue the relationship.

We only have so many love connections in this world. Do your part to find ways to keep those connections alive and well. Be the hero, take a chance, and be vulnerable with your heart. Let others know you care. You might be surprised how many hearts will open through your actions.


Kimberly Mitchell
Author of Loving with Purpose

To read more on dating, relationships, family and friends, check out my book, Loving with Purpose, or go to any of the following links…

Twitter Facebook Pinterest MySpace YouTube Google+ Tumblr

Wounded Warriors


Wounded Warriors

By Mary Cook, M.A., R.A.S.

SunsetAddicts enter recovery as wounded warriors with unhealed traumas and deprivations, and swords and shields that they hope will protect them from further suffering.  But the war is inside; between the defenses and dysfunction in the mind, and the heart pleading for mercy and grace, between the poisons in the body, and the spirit longing for peace and joy.

And the fear of letting go of all that we identify as ourselves and our lives is terrifying.  And the fear of facing all the wounds that we sustained and perpetrated, is overwhelming.  And the depth of the unknown truth, and absolute mystery of the next moment is incomprehensible.  And the experience of being helpless, exposed and vulnerable stimulates all past trauma and pain.

Yet recovery offers a warm welcome into a fellowship where we are safe and surrounded by a state of grace, much greater that the war and fear within us.  Everyone has value here and everyone has something to give.  We learn that hope arises from helping others and peace arises from practicing patience.  Healing is offered in exchange for swords.  Courage is offered in exchange for shields.  The pain of our defects and destructiveness now motivates us to serve the greater good in life.

We see how we are not separate from life but interwoven into the whole fabric of life.  Each moment holds magnificent possibilities of learning, of letting go, of growing, and of being.  We begin to feel our connection to the Source of pure goodness and mercy, and align our mind, heart, body and spirit to this truth.  The greater vision is not war, but compassionate cooperation.  The greater vision is not fear, but faith that we all can generously and joyfully contribute to the highest good for all of life.

False Self and Soul


False Self and Soul

Mary Cook, M.A., R.A.S.

False Self and SoulThe flowers’ face turns easily and effortlessly to the sun, thereby receiving warmth, nourishment and strength.  God sends love and light to all of us, saintly and sick, ignorant and wise, without discrimination.  Just as there are barriers to the sun, which prevent plants from receiving its rays, we have obstacles in ourselves and in our lives, which disturb conscious awareness of God’s gifts to us.  Problems and pain arise when the flow of divine love is blocked.  Significant interactions, especially in childhood, which fail to actively demonstrate spirituality, trigger self-doubt and unworthiness.  Defenses and adaptations to painful experiences create a false sense of self, which continues to attract similar stressful themes.  These reinforcing experiences can lead us further away from our heavenly heritage and toward a search for fulfillment in areas that will ultimately betray us and leave us feeling empty.

We are tempted by what promises quick, easy “fixes” for pain, problems and lack of purpose.  We are easily addicted to alcohol and other drugs, sugary, salty and fatty foods, compulsive shopping, sex and gambling, mania, money, numbing, power, prestige and violence.  Our focus is on our five senses, our false self, and a society that disguises abuse, cruelty, dishonesty, greed and exploitation of the earth and its inhabitants, as progress, efficiency and ironically the improvement of humanity.

And yet, as human beings, we commonly devalue, exploit and waste what we acquire in abundance or never lose.  Perhaps to fully appreciate and demonstrate the highest love in this life, we must experience specific challenges, obstacles and even traumas, before reclaiming the treasure of divinity within us.  Sufficient negative personal experience and significant pain is generally required before we re-consider who we are and how we are living.  Habits and defenses that offer even the illusion of temporary comfort are generally not abandoned without a long and difficult struggle.  Given these factors, perhaps pain, problems, and the betrayal of all of the habits that we believed would help us, are needed to ultimately motivate us to align with our spiritual being.

We can ask ourselves in any moment of action, feeling, speech or thought, if we are coming from our false self or our soul.  The answer is easy to discern.  False self attempts to conquer, and creates chaos, conflicts, confusion and division.  Soul is profoundly peaceful, loving, understanding and wise.  False self uses anger and fear to amplify selfishness and willfulness.  Soul uses gentleness, gratitude, humility and open-mindedness to enlarge its giving.  False self nurses pride to hide self-hate and dwells in self-pity to avoid accountability.  Soul does not judge us and reminds us that errors are to be used as opportunities for learning, healing and growth.  False self blames, condemns and hates.  Soul tells us that there is really nothing to defend or struggle against.  False self has constant cravings, while soul is in a perpetual state of grace and fulfillment.  We can learn from the consequences of our decisions and actions what it is that promotes emotional, mental and physical well being.  Negative energies take us further from our divine essence and positive energies bring us closer.  We have free will to choose our path and change our path at any time.  False self uses the mind to give us worldly knowledge for this life.  Soul uses the heart to help us understand higher truths, which give us the keys to Heaven.

We can use our daily experiences to become more mindful of our true internal state and of what we are learning in our environment.  Prayer, meditation and communion with our heart can help us to integrate this life with our soul’s purpose.  The more we focus on that which keeps us aligned with God, and actively demonstrate spiritual principles, the more of Heaven we bring to earth.  Being a positive example of a human being is not easy or effortless.  Yet our evolution and flowering is worth the time and devotion.  We must identify all of the ways in which we keep ourselves in shadows, and one by one, remove these obstacles to our enlightenment.  The more darkness we surrender, the more we feel divine warmth, nourishment and strength flowing through us.  An abundance of blessings awaits us as we increasingly open our hearts to the loving spirit of God within us and within everything around us.