Honoring Your Heart As An Empath

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(Picture of me. Can you tell I was a deep child full of angsty thoughts?)

It’s one of those nights I can hardly sleep again. Many thoughts and things, my mind is a dizzy array of processing labyrinth. I can’t let go, I try, I pray, I do affirmations but I realize I probably just need to write it out and perhaps that is the gift of being a writer, thinking too deeply, feeling too deeply. And as a writer, as an artist I’m gifted to be one of those empaths I read about. 

Highly sensitive. 

Which confirms my life and previous accusations of “why are you so tired all the time?”, “why can’t you handle this?”, “why are you so weak and sensitive?”, “why can’t you just move on?”, “you are too sensitive”, “why do you need so much alone time” or the anger I get from people when I tell them I need alone time.

I can’t process, I literally break down, I need alone time. 

Try being an empath and growing up with people complaining to you, dumping their problems on you (especially your caretaker/parent). I find my physical being absorbing the heaviness of peoples’ problems, my own included. I am sore, weak, days where I feel like I can’t move but I still do, I walk, I dance, I need to express those emotions. 

Other times I pray out loud, I have to verbalize those emotions. 

But then I also know that after my alone time, I need people, I need to socialize, I need to express what I have been processing. I believe there are many people in this world that suffer in the silence as an empath, me included. We often try to overlook our need for space and time to process, thinking…”why can’t we just be like them? You know, the normal people who seem happy all the time”. 

While people seem to move on happily from disappointments or traumatic events, I find myself spiraling in thoughts of “why me” or “when will this healing end?”. I had to learn to set boundaries from energy vampires. When I was coaching people one on one I realize that it really wasn’t my thing since I am unable to listen to peoples’ problems without carrying their energy. I much prefer group settings where I speak my story and encouragement without having to counsel people one on one.

I also had to learn how to set boundaries with people in my life. And even block people out. Though after I felt a bit of guilt, I realize that I had to put my heart first. It is an ongoing learning process for me. I am imperfect. But I am learning to have grace for myself.

I am glad that I have been rescued from the lie that “I should be__________”.

You don’t have to be anything. You don’t have to pretend to be like everyone else.

You don’t have to get over it- you take your time, you process your thoughts, you need alone time, you take it, you need to be with people, you do that.

Part of honoring your heart is learning to cherish what you need and to care for your soul in ways that others may not understand, and that’s okay. You might even anger or disappoint people. People may lash out at you or take it personally…just explain yourself. Communicate your needs…or not. Some people will not understand because they are only focused on their own needs, and sometimes that means letting them go. And that’s okay too.

XOXO https://www.instagram.com/rebekkalien/

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The Truth of Your Heart & How To Live From A Place of Authenticity

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The truth of your emotions, if not dealt with resurrect in other areas of your life, creating discrepancies between who you are and what you do because your heart is desiring to tell the truth (even if you do not want to feel them). The adult self will reprimand the little one, when in fact the adult self should have allowed the little one to be honest at all cost….the cost of facing the pain, anger, the cost of not being liked or understood, the cost of rejection.

Love for self will eventually say “I am worth the cost”.

Though the process of moving past “people pleasing” (because perhaps you have not spoke the truth in fear that you will be rejected) will be difficult, you will reach a part of you heart that is authentic and you will be able to live out of authenticity versus people pleasing.

I am realizing that any form of addiction, “bad behavior” comes and swells from areas of your heart that you have shut down, unwilling to feel emotions, that is why you need a certain release because the truth of your emotions were not expressed. That is why people turn to self hating addictions or behaviors.

I have experienced this myself. The self willed discipline to be a certain way to society, to look a certain way. It came mostly from legalistic religious upbringing from institutions that loved the behaviors and not the person.

It taught people to not feel, to pretend to be positive and pretend to forgive yet with bitterness buried alive.

Self-will is useless. Only Spirit can enable you to be transformed. It is an inner transformation, not performance.
God sees the heart while people see outward appearance.

It has taught me to discern. Wisely.

But I have learned to be authentic with my true emotions.

Because emotions are valuable. Even if it is pain.

I have become stronger from within, as more people misunderstood me, the more I was able to face the pain of rejection and the more I became truthful with my heart.

The heart longs to be truthful, it needs to be expressed. Do not pretend, do not suppress them. We often fight our desires because of “shoulds”, no longer listening to the little child within. We try to discipline our hearts thinking we know better. The heart needs to express its true desire.

 

A New Day: My Story of Broken to Healed

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Less than 3 years ago I was sitting in a hostel in Barcelona in a bunkbed.

I had a dream that I was to quit real estate, like not actively participate in it anymore. I had just carried a duffel across western Europe and little did I know how much that experience would change my life. It was also on that bed that I first saw Toure Roberts speak via youtube. Up until then my relationship with God was outside of institutions because well I had let go of a really closed minded institution. I grew up going to church and I didn’t realize how legalistic most churches were until I finally left 6 plus years ago.

And I saw God like I never saw Him before. Gracious, fatherly, loving, generous, slow to anger, quick to love, quick to extend a hand. 

Then like a snake, I shed everything. I shed my career, I shed my relationship, I shed some friendships, I shed my apartment, I shed my prized super comfy sofa that I really loved, I shed almost everything, the forks and plates.

I had built my life on a lie, that I wasn’t enough. 

And God would speak into those insecurities and continue to speak “you are enough right here and right now” in the next days, next year, and so forth.

I learned to love myself in the darkest places of my heart. I learned to be okay with emotions, you know the ugly ones…emotions like “Hey you hurt me” or “hey that hurt, I mind that you said that”. I learned to VALUE my voice. 

Because even now when I tell people what I’m going through they quickly remark “you are victorious” instead of being there with me in the pain. I have learned that not many people are comfortable with facing their place of pain. Reading “No More Faking Fine” has taught me to lament, to struggle with God in the pain, to be okay not being okay.  

And obviously we all hate it when people complain too much or dwell on their pain 24 hours, we hate it…yah, that’s another issue, but some of us, like me, never learned to lament.

In the months and year of feeling like “nothing was happening” God was actually healing me and replacing the lie of “I’m not enough” to “I belong, I am enough. I am loved and accepted right here and right now”. 

And in doing so, I no longer needed the attention of people…of men, or the desire to need to be wanted or chased by potential partners. I no longer needed acceptance from people. And yah, I still have insecurities here and there but I feel different, I feel at peace with who I am now. 

No longer chasing things, opportunities, friends, potential friends, potential mates…I sunk deeper into God’s unconditional love for me. 

I would no longer be defined by my accomplishments and accolades but by the tiny and still voice of “enough” and “love”.

I found God’s love to be deeply captivating, deeply protective, silently powerful. 

The breakthrough is here. The breakthrough is you. The breakthrough is YOU knowing who you really truly are.

Gaining Freedom In The Waiting

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When you heal your heart, you may find seasons of seeming equilibrium, no extremes. Your old self may crave drama, it may be addicted to highs and lows, but you are a new being. You have been healed, you no longer need external validation to confirm your inner glory.
She is no longer broken, looking for acceptance in the wrong places or the wrong people. She is whole, gaining freedom in the waiting.
Her heart belongs only to the one who has freed her. She is secure in her own right, she breathes with courage. She waits when everyone runs, she runs when everyone waits. She listens to her heart because it tells her when to go, when to wait, where to go or whether to stay.
She is no longer attracted to the dark balls of illness and disease that looks for broken parts of humans to absorb and trap.
She is no longer chained to old patterns, bad boys, nice boys with manipulative tendencies, bitchy friends, gossip, bad-mouthing, she looks for peace in places. Where is the peace, she wanders there, she is attracted to light. She is light.
She would rather be alone than with bad company. She comes alive in the presence of the one who frees her, there within her heart. She lets go and flies free.

I Found My Identity In The Wilderness

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Finding our identity is probably one of live’s biggest struggle.

Ignoring other people’s opinions about who you are or who you should be and what you should do is another. It is never about what they think about you, but what you think about yourself. 

For a long time I didn’t really know who I was, I knew I had big dreams and I had visions of what my life would look like, but since every dream takes time…people simply saw my process. When people don’t see results, they start judging you big time. Even though you have only been on this earth for less than 30 years, for some reason they want you to be Richard Branson already. And perhaps it was my mistake to tell people, I basically was so full of passion that I told everyone. And then people started mocking me. 

And then I hid. 

Not in a cave, but something like one. I departed from people, cut ties with people who didn’t truly understand. I kept a few close friend and I am truly grateful for them because they have seen my journey. I believe that this season is essential. This season I call the wilderness season requires introspection and sometimes seasonal solitude. 

In the wilderness season God helped me weed out the lies…the lies of not being enough, lies that I wasn’t good enough, that I needed to prove myself….lies that I must hide myself to honor those around me (that didn’t know themselves).

It’s dishonoring to yourself to hide your light, it’s dishonoring to the creator who created you.  You are way too brilliant to be hid, you are way too beautiful to not be admired. 

But at the end of the day, you must see yourself right first. You must see your own beauty, your own brilliance, your own talent, your own genius. You must be so confident that even if others belittle you, you can defend yourself in confidence, or in confidence walk away. And oh, forgive them and not live with a false success revenge mentality (which is when you are offended and try to succeed to prove people wrong rather than doing it out of pure joy and love).

I often hear “do not engage, this is a low mentality warfare” sometimes when I hear negative remarks. I know it is their ego speaking, so I must be wise not to get distracted in low level spiritual warfare. There are so many tactics the enemy uses.

Gossip is one of the ways I’ve learned self-control. Today someone mentioned someone who was told something about someone. They were demeaning them, judging their decisions in life. I listened and then I said “we don’t know them, we don’t even talk to them, why are we judging them? And also we’ve made mistakes in our lives too, everyone has their battles”. I know that I have been there too, mistakes, failures, I am not one to judge. 

In a way, the wilderness season humbles you. It prepares you to be the great person you are, to confront giants that belittle you, tell you you’re not enough. The wilderness season prepares you to enter battles in your work, with companies, with consultants, with kings, queens, presidents. 

Interesting. What did they say about me? Well, I hope one day they know how brilliant they are too. Because I know I am fearfully and wonderfully made, loved and accepted for who I am now.

True Connection to Riches

“When you are inspired by a great purpose, everything will begin to work for you. Inspiration comes from moving back in-spirit and connecting to the seven faces of intention. When you feel inspired, what appeared to be risky becomes a path you feel compelled to follow. The risks are gone because you are following your bliss, which is the truth within you. This is really love working in harmony with your intention. Essentially, if you do not feel love, you do not feel the truth, and your truth is all wrapped up in your connection to Spirit. This is why inspiration is such an important part of the fulfillment of your intention to live a life on purpose.”- Wayne Dyer

I am an artist.

It is more than a job, it is a calling. It was predestined. We are all artists in some way.

I am disturbed when people talk about getting a job to survive, I used to think that way too. I used to put bills first and passion, vision, purpose second.

I am not a survivor, I am a thriver.

I don’t merely want to survive and live a get by life, I want to live a thriving life. I made a choice to GO ALL IN, no backup plan. Let that backup plan be God. Artists are prophets. If you create in anyway you are an artist. Artists have thoughts, ideas, blabbering in their mind and they put them out into the world. They mirror the creator. Growing up I had some people comment in surprise that I believe in God as though believing in God is an ignorant thing to do and also that I was too cool a person to believe in God. I’m an artist, I create shit. Why wouldn’t I believe in God. God created things. 

You know you are “inspired” or in- spirit when you have these flow of ideas and thoughts and you can’t seem to SHUT THEM UP. Like this morning I woke up to do my numero 2, and then I couldn’t go back to sleep because suddenly this thought “I am an artist….it is more than a job, it is a calling”….okay, go to sleep, but then my mind wouldn’t shut up, it was like God speaking to my mind in paragraph format and it was so detailed that I had to just turn on my computer and write it down. 

“And public speaking was not a risk; it was something I had to do because I knew that I could not feel happy with myself if I did not follow my heart. The universe handled the details, because I was feeling love for what I was doing, and consequently, I was living my truth. By teaching love, that very same love guided me to my purpose, and the financial remuneration flowed to me with that same energy of love. I couldn’t see how it worked out, but I followed an inner knowing and never regretted it.“- Wayne Dyer

A lot of people ask me this question “but how do you pay the bills as a freelancer or artist?” I find that hilarious because I’ve managed to sell most of my big belongings and live virtually very free from bills. For example I haven’t had a sim card for a year and a half, I use a google number and it also keeps me from getting distracted from living in peace. I seem to have everything I need and more all the time.

And when I feel “lack” it usually comes from believing a lie that I am not enough, that I need to supplement my being by having more clothes, makeup, things. 

Living in grace means my relationship and being with God comes first, my connection to God is my connection to provision.

He guides and leads me to places, opportunities, resources, money, things..and I don’t have to fret.

It’s like if someone asked “but how am I going to feed myself?” when her dad is standing right next to her with a consistent flow of sushi, tuna tar tar, pasta, steak, smoothies, etc. You get the idea. I’d be pretty offended if I was the dad. But most of us work out asses off in our non-inspired human way while “dad” is standing there with everything you can ever want or need and we refuse to accept his help. 

Pride? Possibly.

So that’s where Trust comes in. Belief. Believing that He is for you and not against you. Then, listening, intently, staying close to the heart of God.

I’ve been led to impossible, miraculous things and talk to people that some would be afraid to talk to…and sometimes yah I have to get over my own fear, but I remember I am safe in God’s protection.

xoxo BEX

my art: https://society6.com/shoprl/prints

 

Purple Weed Cake

My craziest, well, I’ve HAD A LOT OF CRAZY travel experiences as a solo backpacker, but the weed cake in Amsterdam was PRETTY crazy.

I am not a drug user, I’ve never tried any hardcore drugs. I’ve only drank. And smoked weed (socially). But THE WEED CAKE from Amsterdam did me in. I only planned 2-3 nights there because the hostels were really expensive compared to the rates I was paying in other cities. After a 9 hour bus ride from London (in 2014), I got picked up from the bus station by a friend I met at King King (LA), which used to play really cool house music, but it is unfortunately now CLOSED. I used to go to King King with my older friends (well, not much older…haha, like 2-3 years older). My younger friends didn’t really understand what the heck it was about, you see it was about the MUSIC and the DANCING, not instagram.

Anyways, we had a meal, caught up and I went up.

It was the cheapest hostel in Amsterdam, which meant you literally lived across a 24 hour club banging loud music….I don’t know how I fell asleep at all. 

But you know being semi- adventurous, I met some random friend in the lounge the next day, which happens to be purple, and he was like “hey, I heard there’s this really good weed cake, want to split one?” We found the cafe, owned by Armenians, I think, and we bought the famous weed cake he was talking about.

Anyways, we split it. We actually split it.

The last time I ate weed was when my friend made a cookie, I only ate a bit of it and when I was trying to drift off to sleep, I felt like there was a bug crawling in my stomach. Talk about paranoid.

Anyways, nothing happened.

But then I got really hungry and went to the only place I could afford with my budget, Burger King. Stupidly, I got a freaken coffee! And a meal. I devoured the load.

The coffee came sweeping up on me like a explosion of heartbeats and stars. I remembered my friend Munir told me not to drink coffee.

I was NOT okay.

I had to lie down fast or I was going to faint or have an epileptic attack.

I walked to my hostel mixed dorm room and climbed up to my bunk bed. I don’t know how much time past, but I literally saw my hand shaking. I called my boyfriend at the time, who I met in London, I said “I’m going to die, I’m dying”. He said “you sound okay to me”.

No really I’m dying.

I don’t know how much time past, but I kept staring at the clock scared that I would miss my bus tomorrow. I climbed down once, threw up, stared at the mirror, my eyes bloodshot. Was I dreaming? I climbed up again, how did I manage not to fall. I was not used to be out of control. I was a control freak really, I mean how else could I backpack on my own and not get kidnapped?

I projectile vomited a few times, one time I couldn’t hold it in and sort of sprayed into some of those Australian mates’ massive pile of stinky clothes and bags, there was even a doll in there. Like what?

The worse was when the purple swirly Victorian style wallpaper turned into Buddha. My heart was racing and this nice Samaritan gave me a drink of her water. 

Later we would bump into each other in Berlin. 

It was in the afternoon. I found myself playing worship music and praying in tongues. I forgave all my enemies and asked God to forgive me for hating on people.

I got my heart right somehow, I don’t know why, but I felt that if I died in that Amsterdam bunk bed, next to filthy stinky shit that belonged to these filthy mates, I’d be okay. Apparently, I even talked to some people, but half way I’d stop.

“where are you from?” – said stranger.

“I’m from LA”- Said me.

“How long are you traveling for?”

me- “uhhhh”. Blank out, I’m dying, I think.

Ran to bathroom, throw up, stare at mirror, ran back to bunk bed, am I alive, am I in some sort of Tom Cruise movie? Everything was like seconds of a film, it was a movie.

This is what came of that day.

download

You can order your own print here: https://society6.com/product/amsterdam-wz8_print#s6-2691391p4a1v45

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The sketch, the cafe, and the hostel cat and I recovering.

I’ll always have stories to tell. Moral of the story, some good art might come from a horrific experience, and sometimes they wake us up to a spiritual reality.