Today I have the pleasure of sharing a fascinating interview with Jane Duncan Rogers, author of “Gifted by Grief.”
“Gifted by Grief” is an inspiring story. Dealing with grief and loss after the passing of her beloved husband Phillip, was the catalyst that helped Jane find herself and connect more deeply to her purpose and passion for living her own life. It’s an amazing book that motivates people to live up to their full potential and a guide to help those who are grieving navigate those dark waters. –Angela Artemis
Read the full interview or listen to it. To listen click on the Audio Player below:
- Jane, what led you to write “Gifted by Grief?”
I always knew I would write about this experience. Well, I was already writing about it in my journal, from day one of Philip’s diagnosis, just like I’d been writing in my journal since I was in my teens.
I also knew I needed to wait until the time was right – and I knew that the time would be right when I felt utterly compelled to do it. Sure enough, that’s what happened, and one morning on holiday when I was ill and had to stay in bed, I created a MindMap of the outline. It surprised me when I got home that I didn’t immediately start writing! But I trusted that I would know, and sure enough, in a few months, again on holiday, I woke one morning and just knew the time was right.
2. How did you feel when Philip was diagnosed, and you found yourselves coming face to face with the possibility of death?
It was a huge shock initially. It prompted a long conversation between us which led to us feeling closer than we had done for ages. Philip made some significant changes in his life which I could see were benefitting him but they benefitted me too. That’s why in the end we were able to be grateful for what cancer had brought, even though by that time we knew he would die from it. Strange paradox that, but it’s true.
- There’s a story in the book about The List – can you tell me more about that?
We’d received an email from a friend of ours insisting we address various questions about the end of life. They were quite pointed some of them, like what kind of coffin do you want, what personal items do you want to leave to anyone in particular, and did I know Philip’s user names and passwords. We resisted doing this for quite a while but eventually I pinned Philip down and we answered them together. It was hard, but in the end, after a couple of hours we were done, and we felt great. It was another thing that created great intimacy, which was wonderful. It felt like our last project together – although now I think this book is the last project!
- For most people their journals are very private. Yet you have shared intimately from them. How do you feel about that now it’s in print?
Well, I feel very strongly about bringing grief out of the closet, so to speak. As baby boomers get older, there is quite a lot around now about death and dying, but not so much that focuses on grief, and the effects of that.
One of the effects of the book is that you get an insight into the minds of both myself as the carer and survivor, and Philip as the patient (through his blog entries). I hope this will help readers to understand that though the feelings may be strong, you CAN get through this. Also I hope it will help people who are grieving to not hide away. I read about so many people who feel they have to pretend that they are all right. I rarely did that, and I was lucky in that I had friends who encouraged me to express how I felt in the moment. That’s how I discovered that if you just let whatever feeling be there, it will go, and usually quite quickly. It’s the ‘trying not to have it’ that actually keeps it there.
6. Tell me about “The Listening?”
The Listening was a kind of channeled writing that had been coming through me for several years previously. One day I was out walking, railing at God because I wasn’t able to have children. Suddenly I heard a ‘voice’ telling me ‘You are not meant to have children in this life; your life is purely a spiritual one’. I was amazed. Over time a relationship with this voice developed, and I discovered it was easiest to hear it if I was writing the words down. By now these were words that I saw in my mind’s eye. I have journals full of them, and they are always, unfailingly, loving and truthful. Here’s an example from my book, about 15 months after my husband had died:
“Death is but a passing from one form to another without fear or clinging. As easy as moving through a doorway from one room to another, and as lacking in fear. So come to this doorway when you are ready to anoint and bless your true Self. Stillness is the secret passage through which this journey is made, and indeed is what life is made of, in essence.”
As you can imagine, I found The Listening very helpful during this time.
- There was a very strong impact for you when Philip actually died, and you saw only a ‘dead body’. It’s not like that for everyone, is it? So how can you relate to others who maybe still see their loved ones as being a body?
It shocked me, that. I had seen one dead body before and I knew from that experience that you can see the life force has disappeared. But what was really amazing about that time was how disinterested I was in his body. That helped in then exploring what IS in this body that is sitting talking to you now. Which as you know set me off on quite a journey!
If others are relating still to their loved ones as if they were a body that is no longer here, that’s fine, so long as it isn’t causing complicated stress or stopping them from thriving in their lives. It’s too easy with grief to get stuck, and when that happens you need a helping hand to get you out, even if you feel ambivalent about it.
- What should people do if they feel they are stuck in grief?
When you’re hit by grief, it’s often a shock even if you knew what to expect (that happened to me) and then you have to adjust to a new situation. Eventually you get used to that situation, even if you don’t like it much. That in itself then becomes familiar over time, and when something has become familiar it can be easy to want to stay there, even if you are hurting still.
If you’re stuck and you know it, then that is the most important thing. Because then little by little you can take steps to get out of the hole of grief. But you may have become used to this new situation and its become familiar, but you know you’re not happy and thriving. Well, the obvious answer to this is that you want your loved one back and then everything will be all right.
I had personal counseling and coaching which helped me, but I also had my own background of therapeutic training which helped me realize what was going on. I never wanted to join a group – the others’ pain was too much for me, and then when I began to feel stronger, I didn’t have the need for it. So – get support is my answer in short!
- Tell me more about the shift that happened for you when you realized you are peace itself.
Well, everything looks the same and yet is experienced quite differently. Not all the time, but most of the time. Result – I am much more relaxed, at peace, able to move easily throughout life, have relationships with people.
The effect of it is that the dramas of life simply are not so important any more. People who are bereaved often say this, but in this case, it’s nearly 4 years now and they are still not very important. It’s like the dramas of an individual life are stories in a story book – to be read, enjoyed, but not really believed as the truth. When you can view your own life and that of others like that, and you know that you really are the peace that underlies all these stories, then you become much less attached to how the story turns out. Which makes for a much more peaceful life!
- Most people would think that a happy ending to the death of a spouse would be meeting someone else that you can fall in love with (without forgetting your previous spouse, of course). That’s not your happy ending – or is there something you’re not telling us?!
When you’re dependent on something or someone outside of you, then there will inevitably be loss at some point. What you think you can get from the outside and bring to your inside is always, by definition, transitory. It’s only when you turn that upside down, and focus on coming from inside towards the outer, that you discover experiences and a sense of who you truly are. And who you truly are has never begun, never ends, is always there. It flows through a body called Jane or Angela, for instance, but it never goes away.
That seems to me to be much more valuable than meeting another man! And yet – I’m living at a practical level too, and so it would be great to meet someone.
- What can listeners do if they want to know more about you and your work?
Buy the book! Gifted By Grief: A True Story of Cancer, Loss and Rebirth.
Visit my website www.giftedbygrief.com where they will be able to download the prologue and first two chapters. And then buy on Amazon, where it is discounted for your readers only from Monday 19th October – Friday 23rd, making it just $2.99 instead of $8.80.
Join my Facebook group – go to Facebook and put in Gifted By Grief and you’ll find it
Email me email@example.com to tell me if you are interested in joining a group to get your own copy of The List done.
Want to meet me? I’d love to meet you in person.
Come on out to the Awaken Wellness Fair
November 22, 2015 where I’m speaking. Click here for details.
Do you hide from the spotlight?
Are you keeping your special gift under wraps?
There are many heart-centered entrepreneurs who are blessed with incredible gifts but struggle to fill their calendars with clients. The problem is not that they lack the skills but that they shrink from taking center stage with their gifts.
Why would someone with a wonderful gift to share shrink from stepping into the spotlight?
The biggest reason is because they have disowned their power. This is a huge problem I feel energetically around clients that no one is talking about. And, it is especially prevalent in women.
When you don’t own your power you will push away opportunities to be seen and heard and to grow into your true potential both personally and in your business.
The are many reasons awesome talented women disown their power and hide from stepping into their full potential.
These reasons run the gamut from low self esteem, low confidence, body image issues, perfectionism, people pleasing, fear of rocking relationships by outshining partners, siblings, parents or friends, to a belief that they are frauds and not worthy of declaring their expertise, talents and gifts. I completely understand and empathize with women who hide from their power because I was one those women.
I didn’t want to rock the boat with any of my relationships. I held myself back for fear of outshining others. I was a cheerleader for others to reach their full potential but shrank back from putting myself out there. It took me many years to outgrow this but I did and since then I have become an advocate for other women who are playing small to avoid stepping into their true power.
One of the greatest quotes I have ever read on this very topic was written by Marianne Williamson in her book, “A Return to Love.”
“Our deepest fear is not that we are inadequate. Our deepest fear is that we are powerful beyond measure. It is our light, not our darkness that most frightens us. We ask ourselves, ‘Who am I to be brilliant, gorgeous, talented, fabulous?’ Actually, who are you not to be? You are a child of God. Your playing small does not serve the world. There is nothing enlightened about shrinking so that other people won’t feel insecure around you. We are all meant to shine, as children do. We were born to make manifest the glory of God that is within us. It’s not just in some of us; it’s in everyone. And as we let our own light shine, we unconsciously give other people permission to do the same. As we are liberated from our own fear, our presence automatically liberates others.”
I remember reading that passage and being absolutely stunned by it. Tears spilled down my cheeks as I realized that I had disowned my power just so that I would not upset anyone. In that moment something happened inside of me and I vowed that I would never again play small so that others could feel okay with themselves. I realized that was not my job. My job was to be the best I could be.
Afterward I began graduate school and later left my marriage. I was determined to change my life and take back my power.
Are you running from taking center stage in your life? Do you play small?
There’s only so long you can continue splitting yourself off from your power. At some point the angst inside at being disconnected from your authenticity will turn to anger and then possibly depression. Anger is very dangerous. It’s a danger to your health and to your spirit. The best thing you can do is to accept your gifts, your expertise and your ability to impact and transform others lives and then let your light shine as bright as it was meant to shine.
If you’re not sure that you fall in this category check out these symptoms to see if you’ve disowned your power:
1. Sabotage yourself by not following through on promises to yourself, projects or programs.
2. Have shiny object syndrome which causes you to “switch gears” by being drawn to the next big thing.
3. Trust the wrong people, don’t trust your intuition and need a lot of validation from outside of yourself.
4. Habit of getting stuck in “overwhelm” which stalls your progress.
5. Downplay your accomplishments and never celebrate them.
6. Compare yourself to others and decide what to do based on what they do.
7. Feel you don’t measure up and need further certifications.
You were given your gifts to help others and make an impact. Keeping them to yourself denies the world of your talents and light. To fulfill your life purpose and reach your full potential you simply must share who you are fully. Your frustration at being unable to break out of your income plateau depends on owning your power and stepping out from the shadows.
The world needs your greatness. Are you ready to own your power? What will you accomplish when you do?
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P.S. You can reclaim your power and step into greatness. Learn more. Click here.
Photo: © michaeljung – Fotolia.com
The Intuitively Inspired Life & the Hero’s Journey
Do You feel Called?
A week ago I spent the weekend with Oprah, that is me and about 2000 other people who attended her “The Life You Want Weekend” event in Newark, New Jersey.
The topic of living the life you want and following your life’s purpose is extremely relevant for me. I left two major careers to follow my bliss; I hope to get it right this time. As you can see, I’m passionate about exploring, writing and sharing this especially as it relates to intuition so I was really excited to attend the The Life You Want Weekend.
Oprah spoke for two hours about her own journey to discover and live her purpose. Her life story is and has always been inspiring and she is a moving speaker. I’m a long time fan so it was no surprise that I was transfixed and, judging from the silence in the stadium so were my fellow attendees.
The second day she presented a line up of great speakers from Mark Nepo, Elizabeth Gilbert and Rob Bell to Iyanla Vanzant to further explore the topic of living your purpose and living the life you want. Each of them were inspiring in their own way.
Light bulb moment
I had a major ‘aha’ when Elizabeth Gilbert spoke about Joseph Campbell‘s life work studying mythology and the universality of the “hero’s journey” which he wrote about in, “The Hero with A Thousand Faces.”
The myth of the hero’s journey pervades every culture
In countless stories throughout the ages mythical ordinary people follow the plot line of transformation to overcome fear, challenges, obstacles, and slay monsters to emerge as the hero.
The myth of the hero’s journey lives on because of all the everyday people, like you and me, who continue to embark on this journey.
To live this journey is to be transformed from the ordinary to extraordinary. It isn’t something you can assimilate intellectually. It has to be experienced and it is the only way to truly reach your peak potential.
My “aha” moment took place when I realized that the “intuitively inspired life” is living the hero’s journey. I wrote about living an intuitively inspired life in, The Intuition Principle: How to Attract the Life You Dream Of.
Living an intuitively inspired life is:
When you feel that pull inside that you were meant for something greater and allow your intuition to guide you toward it. Following it you will be led on a journey to places you never dreamed of, you will meet with incredible people and opportunities that you never dreamed of and in the end what you will discover is your authentic self, your true greatness and your life purpose.
Face your fears and leave the land of your comfort zone, no matter the cost.
Answer “the call” to be more, to live a bigger life, to fulfill your potential and greatness by being the hero in your own life and by doing what everyone else secretly wishes to do.
You will return from this journey a changed person and….
You will become a person who now dwells in the land of possibility
You will become a person who says “I can do it and I will do it.”
You will become a person who says, “Why not me?”
You will become a person who leads rather than follows.
And, you will become the fearless hero in your own life story.
So let me ask you, “Do you feel called?” How long will you wait to answer the call?
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P.S. Live an Intuitively Inspired Life! Learn more: Click here
Image: © Dudarev Mikhail – Fotolia.com
I’d rather have the things I want in life come to me than have to go and “get” them. It makes life so much easier not to mention exciting. This is the transformation your life goes through when you rely on your intuition to guide you. The world comes to you.
Your intuition provides the “intel” or intelligence for you life. When you use this “intel” it’s always a “short cut” to whatever it is you are trying to create in your life. So why wouldn’t you want to begin listening to your intuition?
I’m living an intuitively inspired life and I’d like to encourage you to also. I followed my intuition and left a 16 year finance career and it has proven to be an amazing ride. Doors have opened and paths appeared before me that were not on my radar when I was living fearfully and holding back from listening to my inner wisdom.
What does an intuitively inspired life look like?
“To live an intuitively inspired life is to be aligned with your intuitive wisdom. When we are aligned with this wisdom, we naturally gravitate toward those activities that honor our authenticity. Our path and true purpose become clear as we allow intuition to lead us. Conventional thinking no longer sways us; rather, we are moved to share out true talents and gifts with the world in loving service.
Centering our lives upon this wisdom activates a blueprint within us that has been dormant since our birth. This blueprint contains our true potential and reveals the route we are to take to remember what our chosen mission is at this time. As we focus our lives on this mission, and on this guidance, we find the obstacles that held us back in the past begin to fall away. Questions we have had are answered, and all the uncertainty we might have experienced about living within this new paradigm disappears.
The journey we take to fulfill our mission reconnects us to our joy and authenticity. We surrender and allow life to flow through us and take us to our next steps easily and effortlessly. We are infused with an energy that streams into us from an inexhaustible source. And, this life force energy carries us over the bumps int he road and headlong to the next steps on our quest. The flow of joy we receive by reconnecting to our authentic selves inspires us to live up to our full potential and greatness; we, in turn, inspire others to reconnect to their intuitive wisdom.
As we live each day, fully connected to our intuitive wisdom, we accomplish more than we could have ever imagined. The journey takes down roads we never would have imagined we would take. We find ourselves enjoying our lives like never before. We surrender the emotional burdens that had us in knots—those that hindered us from living life fully. As a result we stop worrying so much and become more playful and open to this divine inspiration. By letting go of the need to control everything and moving with this flow we will find that we no longer have to go out and “get” the things in life we desire; rather, they begin to come to us and appear in our lives exactly when they are needed. When we align with our intuition we are resonating with the wisdom that created the Universe and our original purpose. It is this harmony that brings the world to us.” The Intuition Principle, p. xv-xvi
As soon as you begin following the path your Soul longs to everything lines up for you.
It’s as if you have changed magnetic polarities. Where before your energy repelled the things you wanted it now “attracts” them to you.
Sadly, the large majority doesn’t live this way. They’ve become used to having to “make things” happen or fight through obstacles to get what they want. So, it seems “normal” and this is why the idea of “having the world come to you” seems so implausible. If people have been doing things one way for eons they just cannot fathom that there is another way.
The truth is you will never see that another reality and way of harmonizing with life exists until you take that leap of faith. There absolutely, positively is a net there……but you have to leap to see it.
Will you leap? Why or why not? What’s holding you back? Let me know in the comments.
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P.S. Want to leap into your destiny but prefer a tandem jump? Check out my program where you will be supported while transforming your life – here.
“We are born at a given moment, in a given place, and like vintage years of wine, we have the qualities of the year and of the season in which we are born.”
–Carl Gustav Jung
A conversation about Intuition and Destiny.
I spoke with radio host Victor Schueller about how intuition can lead you to your destiny if you learn to listen to it. (Listen to the recording at the end of this post.)
Your intuition is a built in sense for guiding your through life
The better you become at recognizing your inner guidance the more successful your life will be. Think of your intuition as a “ping” not unlike the ping from a sonar device on a submarine. When you are near danger your intuition pings. When you are discontented with your life you get a ping and when you are on track you get another ping that bubbles up from your soul and makes you want say, “I love my life!” These are the pings that guide you on your journey to find your purpose and destiny.
Your astrology chart is a map of your life
Another way to find your purpose and destiny is to have your astrology chart done. Astrology is a very accurate method for honing in on your destiny. The planets, asteroids, aspects and angles at the time of your birth are unique to you and explain your personality and character traits.
The birth chart will show you what your life purpose is, lessons you need to learn, lessons you’ve mastered, and your gifts and talents. Your chart will also show you whether you are innovator, great business mind, feel most comfortable working from home or whether you need to be out with people. It will clearly show you that you belong in the law field, publishing, or in journalism or some other writing profession.
The chart will show you whether you have the soul of poet,artist or musician or whether you are meant to be in the sciences. It will show you if you have the talent to make wise investments or not or if you’re meant to manage other people. The list is endless. It’s amazing how accurate the chart is.
If you are unsure about your purpose a life purpose reading will give you much needed clarity. You can find your purpose in a very short amount of time. Instead of spending years wondering and spending time in the wrong career you receive immediate confirmation through having your birth chart read.
Stop wondering and start living your true purpose! Learn more here.
Tune in to my fun conversation with Victor Schueller. Click the audio player to listen.
Do you know your purpose? What questions do you have about astrology or finding your life purpose? Share them in the comments.
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P.S. Turn up the volume on your intuition – click here!
Photo: English – Astrological clock at Venice (Wikipedia)
Is your mother always right?
The older I get the more I find this to be true…..
Does this strike a cord with you?
Here’s a story from my life:
When I was younger and getting ready to declare a major in college my mother urged me to be an English major. At the time there were no other majors if you wanted to be a writer. My mother saw me as someone like her; someone who thought deeply about things. And like her, I excelled at writing (she was an assistant editor at a newspaper before she married) and she knew that I loved it.
My father was a mechanical engineer who spent his entire career working on huge building projects in Manhattan. He even worked for the Trump organization at one point. He witnessed engineers who also had business or accounting degrees rise through the ranks of the some of the biggest construction companies he worked for. He saw me as level-headed and business minded like himself and so he urged me to major in business or accounting. I will never forget him telling me, “The way to the top is to be an accountant.”
Who do you think won out?
I don’t know what I thought “the top” was but at the tender age of 18 I wanted to please my father and get “there” and so began what would turn out to be several decades spent in the financial world. I was successful and it turns out I was level-headed and business minded but oh how miserable I was as a “round peg in a square hole.”
My mother was right and I wish I had listened to her.
Clearly, a kid who begins writing little books at age 8 and wants to duplicate and distribute them throughout the neighborhood was meant to be a writer and my mother knew it. Call it a sixth sense or mother’s intuition, I guess you could say my mother knew me like a book!
Was my dad wrong?
No. He also saw something in me that was true. I was then and still am business minded but the best way for me to express this talent is through writing and sharing with you not in a corporate management job.
The soul of who you are really meant to be is usually pretty obvious to the people who know you well. I guarantee your purpose isn’t hiding from you. It’s your desire to please and lack of confidence in yourself that gets in the way of listening to that intuitive voice within that knows soo well what you were born to do.
Happy Mother’s Day to all the moms out there!
Mother’s Day is a day to celebrate your mom. So, what was your mother right about? What advice did she give you that you wish now you had listened to? Share her wisdom in the comments.
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P.S. If you want to heighten your intuitive voice – click here!