A Lover's Goodbye

"And I...will swallow my pride
You're the one that I love
And I'm saying goodbye...."

It's the last day of February, and I'm going to have to say farewell. The sun is already rising earlier, setting later, and the silence of snow-covered mornings is broken by the call of the songbirds.  March will enter like a lion or a lamb, ushering in spring's promises and busyness.  I'm clinging desperately to the visages, refusing to let go.

"...I'll be the one if you want me to
Anywhere I would've followed you..."

I want to hang on to my peaceful self-absorption, and my season of introversion. I want my long-sleeves, hats and mittens. I want to watch my dog wallow in the snow with unadulterated joy. I want to feel my breath stolen by a cold wind desperate for some warmth.  I want to see the moon glistening on the white blanket of my sleeping mother in the middle of the night.  I want to quietly contemplate what it means to be me, and not feel obligated to do anything more than just that.

"And I...I'm feeling so small
It was over my head
I know nothing at all..."

But, it isn't going to last. I see the writing on the proverbial wall. My lover is leaving me. He'll say nothing as he departs. He lets Spring do the talking. I don't know if I'll have another opportunity to see Winter again. I whisper, "Say something, I'm giving up on you."

A crow caws in the distance.

Thursday's Child: What Happens When You Aren't Feeling It?

Today, I'm not feeling it. I don't have that 'get-up-and-go', and that mountain I'm suppose to move? I think it looks just fine where it is. Those places to go and people to see? They can do just fine over there without me. I'd like nothing better than to just crawl back into bed. So much for being a Thursday's Child, huh?

In times like these, I have a couple of choices.  I can go back to bed and just ignore the rest of the world. Even if I know that my income is dependent upon me being at work (say, an hourly wage worker), I still have the choice. I could weigh out the cost versus benefits to not going in and make a decision from there. Or, I can choose to push on through, despite feeling this way. The one thing I'm not going to do is to beat myself up for the way I feel. I used to push a guilt-trip on myself when I wanted to slack off or hide out.It stems from childhood.

My mother wasn't someone who held too much stock in letting us stay home sick or because we just weren't feeling school that day. She was the person who believed that if you were truly sick, you'd have a fever of 101.3 or higher, be close to death and in need of hospitalization.

I was conditioned to make myself feel bad if I didn't overachieve every day. Even when I was a stay-at-home mom with 6 kids under the age of 12, you could eat off my floors. Five loads of laundry every day, even when I sprained my ankle during a Kenpo belt test (I hopped a lot). I was Head of Neighborhood Watch for the Navy Housing Association, Parliamentarian for both the PTA board and the Housing board, and President of the Foodbank. 6 days a week at Kenpo, and my kids all were doing well in school. I felt like a failure most of the time.

I learned the hard way that success isn't measured on a moment, nor is it calculated by how much activity or work you do. It is how you feel about yourself and your relationship with the life you design. If I'm not feeling it, it won't matter how much I do, I won't be achieving anything but frustration and low self-esteem.

So, I'm taking it slowly today. I'm nurturing me. I have tasks that need completing, but they'll get done, even if not exactly in the time-frame my boss or even I wanted, initially. My experience, my life, my well-being.. those are what's most important. I'm doing life right nowadays. That's what makes me a success.

Beannú na déithe's n'aindhéithe ort !
("The blessings of the gods and the non-gods upon you".)

Thursday's child is a new series of blog posts where I examine what it means "to go far". I hope you'll join me in this exploration each week

Friday Favorites: Winter's Homage

As I sit here writing, the temperatures in my little corner of the world have bottomed out, and it's so cold outside that the wind is trying to steal my breath to warm itself. Tomorrow, it'll be just at the freezing mark and snow is forecasted for the area. The next day, it's supposed to rise up to 41F (5C), which will most likely feel like a heatwave.  I wouldn't speed up this process for anything. Winter is meant to be cold, harsh and foreboding. It is also a time of rest, contemplation, and planning.

We tend to love the idea of winter during the solstice season. We want snow for Yule/Christmas. We just adore bundling up in sweaters, drinking hot chocolate, and curling up by a fire. When the holidays are over, the same weather we'd been lauding is now bleak and ugly. By February, even those complaining are tired of hearing themselves talk about it. It's all about perspective. Spring will come soon enough, and we'll be getting very busy with life again. It'll be much more hectic and there won't be time to think, much less contemplate or rest.

One of my favorite poets is Patricia Monaghan. Her book, "Seasons of the Witch," is an homage to the turning of the wheel. She crossed over the veil a few years ago, but her legacy lives in the pages of her works, and in the flames they ignite within our hearts.

Here is one of my favorites to read at this time of year.Maybe this will help my fellow winterlings endure:

Lying Fallow

     After storms, I walk the winter garden.
     In bone-time, I see the world's structure: the oak's drama, the ash's dance, the curtain of the alder. The shapes of innerness, the way the light falls on the open boughs, what it reveals of the past, the future.
     A flicker of red cardinal, that rough imperial presence.
     I walk the woodland path. Without distraction of hope, I see what is ending, ready to die. The ironwood, bark twisted around its narrow frame, its roots loosening in the earth. The tilting willow, about to relax unto death. The great old maple that soon will fall. Then my throat will tighten, my eyes flood. Now, I look without bitterness at the past, the future.
     No regrets. Only seeds. Everywhere, seeds. The past, the future. At the road, burdock holds up pointy fists. Beneath, yarrow stands, erect small soldiers. Grass catches wind, swooning to the ground and springing back. Rose hips gleam, and the last red firethorn.
     The special beauty of waiting. Patience and reserve. Proud bearing, infinite vulnerability. Things seen for what they are.
     Dark shadow on the snow; above me, crow calls.

Thursday's Child: Perseverance- The Other Side

Last week, I examined what it means to persevere. If you missed it, here is the link

My friend and fellow writer for Imramma, Michele Warch is assisting me in addressing the flip side of that coin (Thank you, Michele!!). In other words, what happens if you get to the point where you really need to quit? This isn't growing corn for you. You feel as if you're beating your head against a brick wall, and you are not, I repeat, NOT having fun. Is it still time to persevere.. to push through?

Michele shares her perspective:

Americans are brought up in a culture that says, “GO. DO. Anything is possible. The sky’s the limit.” The reverse connotation of these beliefs, of course, is: If you fail, it’s your own damned fault. You didn’t try hard enough. You don’t have what it takes. You ARE a failure.

Perseverance is a vitally important skill. There’s no argument to that. However, the wisdom to recognize when something is not beneficial for us is equally valuable. How many times have you trudged through to the end of a project which had become meaningless to you because you just had to FINISH it? The only joy you feel is half-hearted relief that it’s finally over. Or, worse, have you ever doggedly run toward a goal, knowing that it would create a revolutionary change in your life to have the anticlimactic ending fall flat?

I would argue that a bit of sage consideration could illuminate these situations. Being a culture of doers, we are whole-heartedly behind the planning and action process. What we neglect is the pre-planning – the pre-contemplation and contemplation stages of change

It is in this time that we ask ourselves the following questions:
1.       What do I hope to solve by following this course of action? What’s the goal?
2.       What likely benefits AND consequences will occur if I do this?
3.       What is likely to really be accomplished? Is that the same as my goal?
4.       What is my motivation? Why do I want to do this? What do I hope to receive from it?
5.       How likely am I to succeed/fail? What is likely to get in my way?
6.       Who else will be affected? How?

And, the evaluation process doesn’t end when the action process begins. KEEP asking yourself these questions, along with:
1.       Is this process healthy for me? Am I benefitting from it?
2.       Who else is impacted? How? Am I causing benefit to them? Injury?
If the answers to these questions do not make you feel good about what you’re doing, it may be time to consider a different path. You are NOT a failure if you abandon a failing path. You are a sage.

Michele L. Warch, MCC, is a priestess in a goddess-oriented path, a teacher, writer, blogger, gardener, grandmother, metaphysical practitioner, oneirocritic, ecofeminist, and occasional unicorn. She lives in the Mid-Atlantic region of the USA where she is employed in adult education after 20+ years in the social work field.

Witchy Wednesday: A Busy Magical Day!

Getty Images- Colin Anderson
Something Witchy Wednesday comes!

It's a new moon in Aquarius, but only barely. It happens at 6:47p EST and then the moon immediately goes void for two minutes. At 6:49p the Sun and Moon will be in Pisces.  Aquarius is associated with electricity, and today is Alessandro Volta's 270th birthday. He is credited with the invention of the electric battery.

In a couple of hours, it'll be the Chinese New Year of the Goat (Sheep/Ram, depending on which Chinese astrology site you visit). Right now, it's 10pm Shanghai/Beijing time.

Here are some links to interesting sites about the Chinese New Year:


It's also Ash Wednesday, a day of fasting, and the first day of Lent in Western Christianity. It spans 46 days (40 fasting days, if the 6 Sundays, which are not days of fast, are excluded) before Easter and can fall as early as 4 February or as late as 10 March. Ash Wednesday is observed by many Western Christians, including Catholics, Lutherans, Methodists, Anglicans, and Presbyterians.

Lent originated as a mirror of Jesus's alleged 40 days and nights of fasting and Satanic temptation in the desert. Ash Wednesday derives its name from the practice of blessing ashes made from palm branches blessed on the previous year's Palm Sunday, and placing them on the heads of participants to the accompaniment of the words "Repent, and believe in the Gospel" or "Remember that you are dust, and to dust you shall return".

It's interesting to see how so many cultures have similar traditions and themes.We are all connected, truly.

So, Happy New Year, Happy New Moon and if you happen to celebrate Lent, may your fasting be easy and your lessons be well-learned during this time of humility before your god.

Fifty Shades of SHHHHHHHH

50 Shades of Grey is a phenomenon that has swept the world, both in book and now movie format. As a survivor of domestic abuse, I’m having a really difficult time understanding how some are swooning over it. I feel compelled to speak out against the idea that this is a story of romance, as the next generation of both women and men need to understand the implications of this story and its popularity.

My first exposure to Fifty Shades came when my oldest daughter (now 30) saw an interview with the author on the Today Show. She contacted me, gushing about how she just had to have these books. Any time one of my children says, “I want to read” it triggers the bibliophile parent gene, which forces me to act. I ran to my friend Amazon and ordered them. I had absolutely no idea what the books were about. “My baby wants to READ!” is all that I comprehended at the time. In a couple of days, a box arrived at my door, and my daughter received it, unopened.

Then, I started seeing articles and discussions referencing these books as poorly written garbage that glorifies abuse and misrepresents BDSM. That caused me to wonder what I’d just spent good money on, so I went to the net to investigate the reviews by those I consider peers and whose opinion I highly respect.

To my horror, I discovered that this was a terrible piece of Twilight fan fiction turned into 3 books. I read excerpts that made me weep for the future of humanity, given that this tripe was put on the NYT best-seller list! I encountered these rabid young fans who called this a “love story”. I couldn’t help but wonder why I’d bother to raise my boys to respect women and treat them well, if what these females want is a Christian Grey instead.

My daughter called me not long after she received the books, and told me that she and her husband had tried to read the first book together. They didn’t get far before they realized that this was NOT a love story, and it wasn’t erotic in the least.

The news came out that a movie was in the works, and now it’s out in theaters. The majority of reviews are saying the same things: this story a horribly constructed` tribute to Narcissistic Personality Disorder (NPD), and to violence against women.

I’ve been approached by young ladies who believe that I should just keep my mouth shut. One even told me that because I haven’t read the books, I have no right to judge.  Several have claimed that this is a love story. I have to wonder if they aren’t simply benefiting from never having been in an abusive relationship; and from the fruits of hard-won rights by those brave predecessors who refused to be silenced.

There used to be a cigarette ad targeting women that said, “You’ve come a long way, baby.” Women in my country have made tremendous strides in achieving rights during the 20th century. By raising our collective voice in support of equality and respect, we were able to obtain the right to vote, the right to work outside the home, the right to an equal higher education, etc…

We still only make $.75 for every dollar a man makes doing the same work. In the southern U.S., there is a good-old-boy network in the judicial system which winks at men who abuse women and children. There are still laws on the books in several states which give a husband the right to beat his wife if she gets out of line. In a world where the ruling party of my country wants to legislate what I can wear, say, earn, and decide (for both myself and my body) I’m not about to be quiet. I’d be complicit if I did not say that the popularity of this work is a huge step backward.

Yes, it is fiction. The argument has been made that this is just a book. Clearly, E.L. James touched on something in our society that should be exposed. To think that this is erotica or that the protagonist of the story is anything other than the victim of abuse is a travesty. Clearly, there is much more work to be done in the world if this is seen by people as a love story, and/or as something about which they should fantasize. Sister feminists and advocates, roll up your sleeves. We still have a long way to go.

Friday Favorites: Fun Facts about Friday the 13th

Happy Friday the 13th! I've always had great experiences on Friday the 13th. I don't consider it unlucky at all. As a matter of fact, I'd consider it one of my favorite things.

Apparently, I share this love of Friday the 13th with singer Taylor Swift. She claims the number has helped her in life. "I was born on the 13th. I turned 13 on Friday the 13th. My first album went gold in 13 weeks. My first #1 song had a 13-second intro," the singer told MTV in a 2009 interview.

Here's some more Friday the 13th Trivia:

The seals on the back of a dollar bill include 13 steps on the pyramid, 13 stars above the eagle's head, 13 war arrows in the eagle's claw and 13 leaves on the olive branch.

If a month begins on a Sunday it will contain a Friday the 13th. There is always at least one Friday the 13th in every year, with a maximum of 3. Yes, there are 3 this year. Today, March and November. If it’s a leap year, then there’s a Friday the 13th in January, April and July.

Ancient Mayans of Central America were the most advanced culture in all of the Americas. They considered the number 13 sacred.

More than 80% of high-rise buildings have no 13th floor. (Those of you who are on the 14th floor know where you really are, right?)

Airplanes have no 13th aisle.

One superstition says that if one cuts one's hair on Friday the 13th, someone in their family dies.

In Spanish-speaking countries, it is not Friday that 13th that is thought to be the most unlucky day. Instead, they consider 'Tuesday the 13th' as a day of back luck.

President Franklin D. Roosevelt would not travel on the 13th day of any month and would never host 13 guests at a meal. Napoleon and President Herbert Hoover were also triskaidekaphobic, with an abnormal fear of the number 13.

Mark Twain once was the 13th guest at a dinner party. A friend warned him not to go. "It was bad luck," Twain later told the friend. "They only had food for 12." Superstitious diners in Paris can hire a quatorzieme, or professional 14th guest for dinner parties.

According to historians and numerologists, 13 is just unlucky because it falls after the number 12, which was considered to be a number of completion:. 12 months in a year, 12 signs of the zodiac, 12 gods of Olympus, 12 labors of Hercules, 12 tribes of Israel, 12 apostles of Jesus, 12 days of Christmas and 12 eggs in a dozen. Of course, if you go to any good bakery, a baker's dozen includes 13 delicious treats- I'd call that VERY lucky.

Finally, for your listening pleasure, one of my favorite songs of all time:


Thursday's Child: Perseverance

In today's segment, I'm looking at perseverance and what it means in relation to "going far.

First, the definition- Perseverance: steadfastness in doing something despite difficulty or delay in achieving success. "his perseverance with the technique illustrates his single-mindedness,"

I believe this is one of the keys to triumph in anything I do. How many of us just persevered through Mercury Retrograde? It's not just going through an ordeal, it's about pushing when  you feel like throwing your hands up in the air and saying, "forget it!" It's putting your courage to the sticking place and refusing to let any obstacle get in the way of what you are going to do. There's an inborn stubbornness to those who persevere. They just won't be stopped.

For those who want to achieve success, the bigger question may be "how do I persevere?"

First, it's important to know what you want. I hate the terms "goal" and "goal-setting." I think they were worn-out in the business world about 10 years ago. As someone who's developed training programs for corporations, I am burned-out on buzzwords. Synonyms would be intention, target, purpose, or plan- choose whichever one resonates with you, but the point is that you really have to want it. The Universe (gods/goddesses, your inborn nature, however you connect) will test you on that, so you be sure you are passionate about what you want. It's what will help sustain you when the obstacles appear.

Next, get rid of self-doubt. This is more difficult for women than men. We're taught from a young age to doubt ourselves and defer to others. A strong, confident woman is more likely to be seen as "bitchy", where a strong, confident man is seen as a leader. Regardless of your gender, skin color, spiritual beliefs, challenges, etc... you get to choose how you see yourself.You also get to choose your purpose in life. Too many of us have spent too much time trying to figure out the "why am I here?" piece of this. Forget that. Figure out who you want to be, and make that happen. Henry Ford once said, "If you think you can or you can't, you're right".  You are the author of your own story. Write it how you see fit, but please, write it with confidence. 

From there, it's learning the art of  stress management*. Stress is a killer, and I mean that literally. It's been proven to destroy the immune system and lead to a multitude of health problems. It's also a huge time-waster. When stressors arise, ask yourself, "In the grand scheme of things, how big is this issue?" Most times, you'll find that it isn't important at all. This too shall pass.

Perseverance is how species survive in nature. Life finds a way. As Pagans, we look to nature to give us guidance on how to live. Take your cue and find your way through. In the words of Marshall Mathers, "Success is my only option- failure's not."   Hang in there!

What tips do you have for going the distance? I'd love to hear from you.

Beannú na déithe's n'aindhéithe ort !
("The blessings of the gods and the non-gods upon you".)

*I'll be offering a Stress Management course in March for those who are interested. Details will be on the Imramma.com site soon.

Thursday's child is a new series of blog posts where I examine what it means "to go far". I hope you'll join me in this exploration each week

Witchy Wednesday: Love Spells

Valentine's Day is soon upon us. Every Witch I know is going to get bombarded with the love spell requests.   Jiminy Cricket once said, "A dream is a wish your heart makes." A spell is very much the same, but with more focus and intent. Like dreams, spells are only good or evil according to the moral compass of the caster. Hence, the reason why most Witches won't do them.

By 'them', I'm talking about spells that manipulate the will of another person. There are all kinds of self-love, beauty, and "attract-love" spells out there. Those are usually ones that a Witch will share. Most of us Witches want you to feel good about you, to find love and happiness in your life, and to be at peace. Now, that's not to say there aren't some folks who won't cater to the lonely hearts club members. I'm not judging. That's on the caster and his/her ethical code.

I love looking at old spells. I am fascinated by history and human nature. I love to explore the motivations of others and study their creativity. If you're like me, I highly recommend "The Encyclopedia of 5,000 Spells" by Judika Illes. She really did her research for the book. It's even now in Kindle format!

My friend Marie Bargas, aka "The Hollywood Witch" was invited to guest blog for the popular "LA-Story.com" site on Love Spells. She's posted some really popular ones, and always does great research.

Check it out here: http://la-story.com/2015/02/top-10-love-spells-for-valentines-day-curated-by-the-hollywood-witch-guestblog/

You can also follow her on Facebook here:

Be sure you like AND get notifications so she'll show up in your newsfeed.

Love spells aren't inherently bad. The whole idea of "good" and "evil" is relative. At one point in human history, pedophilia was part of the normal culture. At one time, it was okay to murder in the name of one's god (and in some places, it's still encouraged!).  If you really feel the need to cast a spell (or have someone do it for you) to make someone fall in love with you, that says more about you than them.

I recommend falling in love with you, first. Instead of feeling sorry for yourself that you are "alone" on Valentine's Day, how about being thrilled that you are alive and that you are someone special who doesn't need another person to love him/her in order to be complete? It's true that like attracts like. When you can fully love yourself for all you are, you'll find that other people want to be around you. They want to bask in your glow. If Valentine's Day is important to you, then pamper yourself instead. Buy yourself flowers. Write yourself a love poem. Romance you this weekend. That's the best love spell I can recommend.

Happy Casting!

A Tribute to Doug Luzar

I was saddened last night to discover that an online friend and a true inspiration had passed through the veil on Sunday. He was 10 years and 1 day older than me, meaning he had just celebrated his 62nd birthday on Friday.

Doug Luzar was a multi-denominational minister, native flutist, and National Guard veteran. Every morning, his vast circle of friends on Facebook would be treated to his words of wisdom. He would say something from his heart to touch our own, and start our day off with clarity in who we were and why we were really here. His music was hauntingly beautiful, and it was clear that he played from the depths of his soul. He was a genuinely kind and loving person. The world is dimmer for his passing.

May he soar with the eagles and sit at the council of the wise elders around their campfires. He is already deeply missed by many.

Here is his sound-cloud site. I hope you'll take a moment to honor him by listening to one or more of his songs.

Thursday's Child: Professionalism- What Does It Mean?

This is the week of my birthday (Saturday), but Thursday is the day of the week upon which I was born, so technically, today is the anniversary of my birth. I've always loved Thursday, and as I've stated in previous installments, I'm working through what it means "to go far".

Most of my readers are aware that while I would LOVE to write, and teach spiritual things full-time, the bills need to get paid, so I work in adult learning and development in a corporate environment. I'm currently developing some soft-skills training for my company's contact center, and I'm at the part where I'm going to teach them about professionalism.

The problem I've encountered in my *cough* years of training is that the word "professionalism" has different meanings to different people. Professionalism means "dressing appropriately" to some people; enunciating and using proper grammar, to others; to some it means being responsible. It's an interesting exercise to start off a training by asking others to define it, before I teach them what it generally means in a corporate environment.

What I've observed is that professionalism is strongly tied to courtesies and etiquette, which are determined by the environment in which they are expected.

Many of my friends and colleagues would say that professionalism is something one should innately understand. I disagree. When I go to a foreign country, it behooves me to check out their culture and customs before I go there. It's just a polite thing to do. I don't want to be an offensive visitor. Most people I know don't either.

It makes sense that if I'm planning to speak to an audience on any subject, I'd want to ensure that I know who will be attending and what their motivations might be for coming to listen to me. I don't think I'd be wearing a 3-piece suit to speak to folks on the manufacturing line. They can't relate to me, and I'd come across as being someone who thinks I'm better than them. Conversely, I don't want to speak to c-level executives wearing jeans and a sweatshirt. These examples would be what I'd label as "etiquette".

Professionalism is also about good manners. For example, I am a tarot reader. I see into other people's personal lives and private issues that they don't want others to know. As a professional, I would never share my client's private issues with others. I don't share their email addresses, nor put them on my mailing list or anything that I believe would be inconsiderate or unethical.

The antonym to "professional" is "amateur". There are several definitions, but I specifically refer to "a person inexperienced or unskilled in a particular activity." A professional is someone with experience and skill. This can be someone who is experienced in life, at business, etc... and as such, a professional is someone who should behave in a manner befitting experience and skill. We expect children to have issues with controlling emotions, improper hygiene, etc... but, as those children grow and gain experience, our expectations of them rise.

I've seen professionalism equated with "being classy." There are just some behaviors that professionals will never display. They don't air dirty laundry in public; they don't throw public tantrums; they don't participate in gossip; they aren't lazy; they don't use low-energy words or display low-energy behaviors.

For my generation, people like Audrey Hepburn and Grace Kelly would be considered professional and classy. In the business world, folks like Bill and Melinda Gates would exemplify professionalism. President Obama is a professional and so is his wife, Michelle. Spiritually, I'd say folks like Wayne Dyer, Ly De Angeles, Deborah Blake, and Marie Forleo are all great examples of professionalism in action.

I believe that someone who wants to go far must make friends with professionalism. How about you? What did I miss? Do you agree or disagree with my definition? What behaviors do you think are critical to success?

I look forward to hearing from you!

Beannú na déithe's n'aindhéithe ort !
("The blessings of the gods and the non-gods upon you".)

Thursday's child is a new series of blog posts where I examine what it means "to go far". I hope you'll join me in this exploration each week

Shock jocks, Perceptions and Expensive Tea (Yes, I need more coffee)

I'm sitting here at my mundane job, trying to get the motivation to open up the courseware I'm developing and get moving. I need MUCH more coffee today. On the way to work, I was listening to the local shock jocks talking, and they actually discussed something interesting, for once. Usually, they act like junior highschool boys and talk about "boobies and farts". I don't normally listen to them, but there were commercials on the other stations, so I stopped. I'm kind of glad I did.

Today, one of them shared that he had gone to purchase some Teavana tea for his girlfriend's birthday. The person at the counter suggested that he make up a special blend, so he chose a couple of teas to put together for her. By the time this exercise was completed, a decent-sized line had formed behind the radio jock, and all he wanted to do was to pay and get out of the way.

To his surprise, the tea came out to a whopping $70.00.  He really didn't want to pay that much, but by now, the line was long and the person had already mixed up this special blend of teas that the radio guy had chosen. He ended up buying the tea, even though he couldn't afford it. Afterward, he consoled himself with thoughts like, "Well, it's my girlfriend's birthday. She's certainly worth seventy dollars!" and "It's not that big a deal. It's only money."

Interestingly enough, the other boys in the studio were right there with him. They all discussed how they've felt that pressure to buy something that they couldn't afford at one time or another. It was fascinating to hear them all talk about how they would get to the counter, hear or see the price come up and feel that sense of blood draining from their faces and their stomachs beginning to feel sick. Yet, they all said that they paid for the items anyway. Several of them said that they would send food back if it wasn't cooked properly at a restaurant, but they all said they had paid at the register.

I've done that myself. I didn't expect to pay that much for something, or the price wasn't made  clear, but at the register, I've paid it; then tried to console myself with very much the same excuses and platitudes that the radio jock did.

What really caught my attention was how they all agreed that they do it. None of them wanted to look like a cheapskate. None of them wanted to admit, "I'm too poor to buy this." None of them wanted to be the guy that stood up and said, "Whoa, there barista-person. This costs more than your weekly paycheck! I am not paying that much money for a couple of ounces of tea." And, none of them wanted to be the one to hold the line up any further. It was all about what these strangers, whom they admitted they'd probably never see again in their lives, would think of them. That's kind of profound, immature rock-jocks. I'm a little nonplussed at your ability to go deep. Moreover, you've given me something to consider today.

Why DO we pay for something like that? Why do we allow ourselves to be bullied by our own perceptions of what someone else may or may not be thinking about us, particularly when none of them pays our bills, cares for us in any way, nor even knows our first names? In all likelihood, we'll never see them again. This smacks of Mulengro to me. It goes to expectation and assumption.

In keeping with my Year of Being Dauntless, I'm going to have to add this to my list of things I must no longer do. Thanks radio guys. Maybe I'll tune in again, sometime.

How about you? Do you relate to these guys? How have you taken steps to overcome the self-talk that assumes the perceptions of others and relegates that to importance? I'd love to read your tips!