Perspective

Perspective is how a person views the world.

For example, Oprah did a talk show about eye witness accounts.  While the audience was waiting outside, there was a fake crime that was staged.  A man stole a woman’s purse.  The audience was then asked to write down what they saw.  After that they were shown the video of the fake crime.  Some people had gotten the color of the man’s shirt wrong.  Some people had gotten the man’s height and age range wrong. At the time, that was their perspective of the situation.

Every one has their own unique perspective of the world, much like wearing glasses, it is the unique lens they see the world through. 

We could debate how someone’s perspective is right or wrong, but really the beauty in this is that a person can change their perspective when they want to.

It wasn’t always easy, but here are a few shifts in perspective that have changed for me:

I have a friend that wasn’t always able to go out when I asked her to.  At first it would make me sad when she said no.  Sometimes we would go months without seeing each other.  We texted each other but we didn’t talk on the phone.  It would hurt my feeling because when she said no, then I would think that she didn’t want to hang out with me.  She would say that she was tired or sick.  My first full time job was as a nurse.  I work 3 days a week.  I’ve never worked any job that required me to work 5 days a week for 8 hours each day.

Thinking about that helped me to change my perspective of the situation.  I feel tired after I work 3 days in a row.  The next day all I want to do is relax at home and not do anything.  I can only imagine how tired I would feel if I had to work 5 days a week with just 2 days off.  I was talking with my life coach and she told me a story about her friend.  I thought about what she said.  Now when my friend says no it doesn’t affect me like it used to.  When she does say yes to going out, I know that she really wants to be there.  She’s not tired or sick.  She is present in the moment.  I was able to change my perspective of the situation.

Want a shortcut to hearing people’s perspective?  Post something on social media or start a blog, haha. 

Another example, is recently someone told me since I said in my blog that I didn’t love myself a couple of years ago, then I didn’t have love as a child.  Perhaps for some people that might be true, but that person’s perspective didn’t apply to me.

I had a great childhood.  I had everything that I needed and most of the things that I wanted.  To be honest, I was spoiled and I loved it.  I was surrounded by love.  I had love from family, friends, and neighbors.

The struggle that I was having a few years ago, was that I was relying on my ability to be happy to come from things outside myself or out of my control.    I was telling myself that I will be happy when I get to a certain weight or my husband comes into my life or I will be happy when I get my nursing degree.

My happiness was fleeting because it was always conditional.

When I shifted my perspective, I realized that happiness is an inside job, as in I had to cultivate it within myself first, it brought me back into the driver’s seat of my life.  Rather than waiting to be happy later, I could be fulfilled and joyful now, and from there losing weight, loving myself, and feeling worthy of love came naturally.

Another example, is when I started my nursing career.  I thought that I was going to be a super nurse.  That was my perspective at the time.  All my patients were going to listen to what I had to say and they were going to change their lifestyle.  One diabetic patient told me that they weren’t going to give up fried foods.  That patient was getting worse each time that the patient came to the hospital.  I finally had to learn that I can’t change a person. Just because that patient wasn’t listening didn’t make me a bad nurse.  I had to change my perspective of the situation.  Now I know that I’m a great nurse.  Some patients change but its of their own accord.  When I overcame my eating disorder, it was because I wanted to change and not because someone else wanted me to change.

One of the reasons that I changed my perspective in the examples above, is because I was harming my self esteem with my original perspective.  That diabetic patient was getting worse, but it wasn’t because of them not listening or my teaching skills.  It was because the patient didn’t want to change and that was the patient’s choice.  My friend wanted to hang out with me but she was tired or sick.  I couldn’t let that person’s perspective on my childhood make me feel sad.  I know the truth.

What I learned was that we can change our perspectives when we want to.

 

Freaking Out and Doing it Anyway

I was recently asked how do I get the courage to do some of the things that I’ve done by myself.

I told one person that I had to go in baby steps.  I used to be scared to go anywhere on my own.  I started small by going to the movie theater by myself.  I went in the middle of the day when I knew there was not going to be a lot of people there.  Now I actually like going to the movie theater in the middle of the day by myself.  Its like I have the movie theater to myself.  That led to being a solo travel nurse.  I was freaking out inside before doing those things but I wanted to do them anyway.  I wanted to be a travel nurse ever since I wanted to be a nurse.  I love to travel.  If I was scared to do things on my own, how was I going to become a travel nurse.

Like my life coach told me, courage isn’t the absence of fear.  Courage is having fear but still doing what you want.

I had to learn to acknowledge the fear.  Before I did my very first open mic poetry reading, I was so nervous.  I had invited some friends.  I was contemplating on not showing up because I was so scared but I also wanted to do it.  So before I got on stage, I had a talk with my guardian angels and told them to help me.  The fear was still there but it had lessened.  After doing my performance, I felt great.  I had faced my fear of public speaking.

Before I went skydiving recently, I was so nervous.  I was actually looking to do indoor skydiving because I had seen one of my Facebook friends do it.  The skydiving place was just 15 minutes from where I was staying.  I just decided to do the real skydiving.  The night before I went, I couldn’t sleep.  I was scared and nervous.  I literally talked to my fear inside my head.  I asked what I was scared of and why did I feel that way.  After I did that my fear lessened.  I was able to go to sleep and rest.  The next day I went skydiving.  Before they let me go skydiving, they wanted me to watch a safety video.  My feared came back.  By that time, I had already paid so I was going to go.  There was no refund at that point.  I had another talk with my fear.  Stepping out of the plane at 13,000 feet was scary.  I didn’t want to back out.  So I closed my eyes and let the instructor lead me.  It lasted probably 10 minutes.  I realized that my fear of the event was gone.  I had a lot of fun flying through the air.

I haven’t regretted doing something that I wanted to do but was scared to do at first.  I now use that fear to my advantage.

I was freaking out inside but I did it anyways.

 

 

 

 

Finding the Beauty

I went hiking today and learned a lesson.

As I was walking up the mountain, a beautiful black and blue butterfly flew in front of me for a while.

I realized that I’m like that butterfly right now.  Life is dealing me some punches right now, leaving me black and blue, but still beautiful.  I’m still living and learning.

On the way to the mountain, it looked like it was going to start raining.  I still wanted to go.  I made it to the top of the mountain and the clouds were coming in and the thunder and lightning had started.  It was such a beautiful sight.  It didn’t start raining until I was in the parking lot when I was done.  God takes care of me even in the midst of the storm.

I recently read a book, A Short Course in Happiness After Loss, by Maria Sirois.  Before I even opened the book, the cover photo spoke to me.  The cover photo is of a bowl with gold in the cracks of it.  I remembered in the Japanese culture, if an object breaks, the cracks are filled with gold.  The cracks become a part of the story of that object.  The author talks about that in the book.  Kintsukuroi is the art of filling in the cracks of an object with gold.  My heartbreak is just going to become a part of my story.

One the quotes in the book, really spoke to me.

“Our greatest freedom is the freedom to choose our attitude.” – Viktor Frankl.

In the middle of my heartbreak, I was choosing to be sad.  I needed to feel that.  It was okay for me to feel that.  In the middle of loss, its okay to feel whatever comes up.  It is also okay to feel happy.  I can choose to see the beauty in the moment.

Even when other people are telling me that I haven’t changed in 10 years or that my life choices are wrong, I can still find the beauty in the situation.  Those people care about me.  They choose to show their love by voicing their opinions and telling me their concerns about my life.  I don’t have to take their opinions or concerns about my life and make it my own.  I know that I’ve changed and I don’t have to prove it to anybody else.  I have to live my life how I want to live my life.

In any situation, we have the choice to choose how we feel.

At this moment, I choose to be happy.  I’m hopeful about the future.

A friend told me recently that I’m glowing from the inside.  She has seen my transformation since I started working with my life coach.

I’m happy with my life choices and the path that I’m on.  I am a beautiful spiritual being.

 

 

 

 

 

My Success

Success has many definitions.

To some people getting married is a success.  To others being single is a success.  To other people getting a million dollars makes them successful.  To some other people, helping others makes them a success.  To other people, traveling the world makes them a success.  To some people, losing weight makes them a success.

The beauty in all those above mentioned things is that success is all of them.

Success is defined differently by different people.

I can define my own success.

My success is going to look different from some peoples success.

My definition of success is being happy in the moment and achieving my goals while living a life that I love.

I once had an interviewer ask me my definition of success.  I was interviewing for a teaching job that taught CPR to healthcare workers.  I hadn’t been expecting that question.  I was scrambling in my head to come up with an answer.  At the time, I was having a hard time defining what success looked like.  I remember telling the interviewer that success was being happy.  Happiness doesn’t depend on how much money is in the bank, if you have a significant other, or a fast car.  As long as you are happy doing your job then you are a success.  I came up with that answer in under a minute.

I wish I had actually listened to myself.  At the time, I was still defining success as having a significant other or a husband.  Waiting on the knight in shining armor.  I don’t need a man to be happy or successful.  My future husband, will be adding to my happiness and success.

Success will manifest itself in different ways for every body.

One of the reasons that I love being a travel nurse, is that I can take a month off in between assignments.  After not taking a vacation for 7 years, I love being able to take time off.  The time off helps with my mental health.  It helps me to relax so I can choose my next assignment.  I don’t want to rush and pick an assignment that I’m not happy with.  I became a travel nurse so that I could go places that I want to go.  To some people, taking a month off means that you aren’t successful and that you are being lazy. That’s ok for them to have that opinion.  Every one can define success differently.

Some people love to work overtime.  They love their jobs and they don’t mind doing it.  I love being a nurse, but I don’t want to work overtime.  Three days a week is enough.  I need those four days off to recharge myself.  I used to work with a nurse that worked 6 and sometimes 7 days in a row.  It worked for that nurse.  I one time, worked 4 days straight and I was emotionally and physically exhausted at the end of the fourth day.

I’m living a life where I am successful on my own terms.

I lived 30 years of my life, trying to live my life by other peoples terms of success instead of my own.  I was never truly happy.  Happiness was fleeting and never sustainable.  Now that I’m living my life on my own terms, I feel successful.  I may not be where I want to be but I’m on my way.

What would you do differently if you lived your life by your own terms of success?

 

Dreamer

I went on my solo cruise, but it didn’t turn out how I thought it would.  A week ago, I was sure that I was going to meet my future husband on this cruise.  He didn’t show up.  I was getting signs and dreams that this was going to be the moment.

I thought everything was falling into place.

While on the cruise, I read a book that struck a chord with me.  The quote stated:

“Not accidentally or coincidentally are we born into our families.  We choose our circumstances and establish a plan for our lives before we are even conceived.  Our planning is aided by the loving spiritual beings who eventually guide and protect us while we are in our physical bodies as our life’s plan unfolds.  Destiny is another name for the unfolding dramas we have already chosen.  Mapped out are the key people we will meet, our reunions with soul-mates and soul companions, even the actual places where these events will eventually occur.  Although every human being has a life plan, we also have free will, as do our parents and everyone with whom we interact.  Our lives and theirs will be affected by the choices we make while in physical state, but the destiny points will still occur.  We will meet the people we had planned to meet, and we will face the opportunities and obstacles the we had planned long before our births.  How we handle these meetings, however, our reactions and subsequent decisions, are the expressions of our free will.”- Dr. Brain Weiss from Messages from the Masters.

This encouraged me.  God/Universe and myself has already planned out my life.  I will meet the people that I’m meant to meet.

When I got home from the cruise, I felt like a failure.  I was heartbroken.  There were some people who were happy that it didn’t turn out how I wanted it to.  There were also some people who wanted me to meet him.

I questioned my dreams and the signs.  I questioned God.  I questioned my life plan.  I questioned my heart.

I had to question myself.

What do I do now?  Do I start living my life like some people want me to live it?  Do I stop going after my dreams?  Can I trust myself?  Can I listen to my heart?

I just don’t believe that God/Universe would lie to me for 8 years.  I ask very specific questions and I get very specific answers.

If I give up on these dreams, I wouldn’t just be giving up my future husband.  I would be giving up the future friends and future plans that I’ve seen.  I would be giving up on the people that I would help.

I can’t go back to my old life.  These dreams helped me to live this life that I’m living right now.

I went from trying grapes to jumping out of airplanes thanks to my dreams.

Even though I “failed” on the cruise, I had a good time.  Ultimately I didn’t fail.

I followed my heart.

“When life offers you a dream so far beyond any of your expectations, it’s not reasonable to grieve when it comes to an end.”-Stephenie Meyer.

I don’t know what the future holds anymore.  I do know that I can’t give up on the dreams that I’ve had but I will be open minded about the future.  I’m going to do what I feel is right for me and not what other people want me to do.

I’m learning a lot about myself.  I wouldn’t wish heartbreak on anybody.  This heartbreak is helping me to learn.

In the end my “mistakes” and “failures” are just blessings in disguise.

I also had to stop listening to sad music.  Jill Scott was singing my life with this next song.  This song was exactly how I felt.  I had this song on replay when I got back from the cruise.

I started to listen to my spiritual war cry playlist.  Those songs uplift my spirit.

I also realized through talking to my life coach, that I did have to grieve for my dreams.  I was shown a whole life with a husband, friends, and experiences that may not come true.  I would be lying to myself if I said that I didn’t want those dreams to come true.

Some day this will all make sense.  For now, I’m going to keep an open mind on God’s plan.

The world needs more people that are willing to follow their dreams even when they fail.

For example, what if Oprah had quit after her first failure.  Think of all the people that would have affected.  She kept going and she has helped so many people.

Failure was one of the reasons that I was scared to tell people about my dreams.  What if the dreams didn’t come true, then I would not only be a failure but then everyone would know.  Now I’m not afraid because their opinions won’t stop me from following my dreams.

Every thing doesn’t always turn out how you want it to.

For now, I’m not going to stop dreaming and following my heart.

Dream on, dreamers!!

 

I’m Honored

I don’t know when this happened.

I used to be very sensitive about my dreams.  If I told a person about them, I would want them to believe me.

I remember when I first told my best friends about my dreams about my future husband.  One of them believed me and the other two didn’t.  I was sad that they didn’t believe me.  It turned into a heated discussion and it was on my birthday.  At that point in my life, I wanted them to believe me and support me.  I realize that I wanted that at the time.  I was really grateful that the one friend believed me because that gave me the strength to go after my dreams.

Now I don’t need anybody to believe in my dreams.  As long as I do then it doesn’t matter if anyone else does.

Last week at work, I ended up telling two people about my future husband and they were happy for me.

I’m more open with telling people about my dreams because I realize that my dreams don’t need to be believed by anyone but myself.

Tonight when I was eating dinner with my family, I told my parents about the cruise that I’m going on.  I told them who was going to be performing on the cruise.  My dad asked if I was going to try to meet one of the performers.  I didn’t answer.  I realized in that moment that my parents don’t believe in my dreams about my future husband.  I wasn’t sad or mad in that moment.  I didn’t even tell them that my dreams have still be going on about my future husband.  I don’t believe that God or the Universe would lie to me for 8 years and lead me on a wild goose chase.

I’ve had a lot of people tell me that I’m focusing on the wrong person and that my dreams are just dreams.  I realize that no one has experienced what I’ve been through.  I could tell some people about my dreams and the signs and they still wouldn’t believe.  It’s not my job to try to convince anyone.

I’m honored that God chose me.  I think my future husband is intelligent, handsome, and an overall great person.  Even if my parents don’t want to meet him or talk to him, then they are the ones that are going to lose out on knowing a great man.

I don’t know when this change happened, but I don’t need anyone to believe in my dreams.

#thefuturemrscarter

 

Meant to Be

I learned a lesson this week.

God/Universe takes care of me and helps me.

I was worried this week because I was supposed to go on a cruse at the end of June.  On Wednesday, when I called the cruise was full and there was no more rooms.  I knew that I was going to be going on this cruise.  I had seen it in my dreams.

The manager was going to check and see if anybody had cancelled.  By Friday she hadn’t called me back.  Friday was the last day to sign up for the cruise.  Of course I had to work that day.  Usually when I work I don’t get a lunch break.  Thankfully I was floated to another unit and had a great day.  I was able to get a lunch break.

When I called the manager, she told me that the cruise was still booked and no one had cancelled.  Right after saying that sentence, she says that she just found a room.  I was able to get the last room on the cruise.  I have to admit that I was worried since I waited until the last minute to book the cruise.

God/Universe has never failed me.  When I’ve done all that I need to do, God steps in and does what needs to be done.

So I will be going on a solo cruise this June.  This will begin a new chapter in my life.  My future will be on the cruise too.  All the signs point to this happening now.

I learned that when you’re meant to be somewhere, God will make a way.

The And

Labels are everywhere in society.

Labels are on the clothing we wear, telling us the size and who made it.  Labels are on the food we eat, telling us what is in it.

Human beings are labeled too.  Just a few of the labels are: beautiful, ugly, fat, skinny, woman, man, good, bad, black, and white.

I realized that I used to be comfortable in labeling people.

I loved to put people in a nice little box or label.  It made me feel more comfortable with the person if I could put a label on them.

When other people started to try to label me, I then realized that human beings shouldn’t be labeled.  People would tell me that I had the “good hair”, so I couldn’t be all black.  People would call me too nice or too sensitive.

Since getting to really know myself, I realized that I can be an And.  I don’t have to be either this or that but I can be an And.

The And is being two things at once.

For example, my landlord in Hawaii, told me that he was a vegetarian that sometimes eats meat.  I understood what he was saying.  He was saying that he could be a vegetarian And still eat meat.  He could call himself whatever he wants to call himself.  It didn’t matter the definition of vegetarian.  That is the label that he wants for himself.  He can be two things at once.

I call myself a vegetarian.  Since I started calling myself that, some people have said that I’m not.  I recently ate a French fry in front of someone at work.  He said that vegetarians don’t eat French fries or cake.  I can be a vegetarian And still eat meat sometimes.  Another person at work, when I was talking to another person, chimed in and said that I still ate sushi so I wasn’t a true vegetarian.

I used to feel guilty when I ate a muffin, even if it felt right at the moment.  I am a vegetarian And I can still eat what I want.

The thing that matters most is what I call myself.  I don’t have to accept any label that someone tries to put on me.

Humans can be beautiful And ugly at the same time.  Humans can be good And bad.

Labeling people used to make me comfortable.  Now it makes me uncomfortable.  Humans are multi-dimensional.

I am sensitive And strong.  I am too nice And I can still get mad at people.

 

 

I Wasn’t Ready

I recently had a conversation that got me thinking.

When I was in my twenties, I thought that I was ready to fall in love and be in a relationship.  Looking back, I wasn’t ready.

How could I ask someone else to love me, when I didn’t love myself?

I didn’t know myself.  I was trying to find out who I was.  I was scared to know myself.  What if I didn’t like what I found?

I used to hate when other people would point out my flaws.  I remember when my best friends used to point them out, I would just leave and go home.  I didn’t know how to handle what they were telling me.

The truth is that everybody has flaws.

The first step that I took to get to love and know myself, was to get help.  In my opinion, most people could benefit from having a life coach at some point in their lives.  The second step was to eat healthy because that would affect my mood.  The third step was to change the way I talked to myself.  I had to let go of all the negative talking that I would do to myself.  Like my life coach asked me, “If I wouldn’t say those things to my patients, then why would I say it to myself?”  In the past, I remixed the song, “I’m beautiful”, to I’m ugly.  I would sing that to myself in my head.  I stopped doing that to myself.  I’m a beautiful person, inside and out.

When I started to fall in love with myself then I accepted myself, flaws and all.  I may not be the prettiest, smartest, fastest, or richest, but I can be Shavawn like no one else can be.  I jokingly call myself the Queen of the World with a co-worker.  In reality, I am the Queen of my world.  I can’t let other peoples opinion of me effect me.  To some of my patients, I’m a good nurse.  To other patients, I’m a bad nurse.  I know that I did the best that I could do.

Now that I’m in my thirties, I’ve fallen in love with myself.  I’m a work in progress and I love the life that I’m cultivating.  I’m noticing that people want to be around me more.  I can tell that my energy is different.

Now I feel like I am ready for love.  Not just romantic love, but family love, friendship love, and most importantly loving myself.  Not loving myself, affected every relationship that I had.  I didn’t know how to love other people because I wasn’t loving myself.  I felt like I wasn’t worthy of receiving love.  It was easy for me to give love to other people and take care of other people.

Now that I love myself, I let what other people say about me, roll off my back.  Recently I had a patient tell me her opinion of me.  It wasn’t good but I don’t even remember what she said.  I do remember telling her that she had the right to think that about me but her opinion of me wasn’t going to change the way I thought of myself.  The next day I had that same patient again and she apologized to me.  I accepted her apology and moved on.  In the old days, I would have been devastated and tried to prove to her that that opinion was unjustified.

I love myself, flaws and all.

I’m letting God know that I’m ready.

 

Courage

I looked up the meaning of courage.

It states, “the quality of mind or spirit that enables a person to face difficulty, danger, pain, etc., without fear, bravery.”- courage. (n.d.). Dictionary.com Unabridged. Retrieved May 18, 2017 from Dictionary.com website http://www.dictionary.com/browse/courage.

I have to disagree with this.

Courage is facing difficulty and having fear but doing it anyway.

Some of the things that I have done, I was still scared when I did them.  For example, when I moved to Hawaii for work, I still didn’t have a place to stay.  I wanted to see the apartment first before I signed the lease.  I didn’t like the apartment and so I had to stay in the hotel until I got another apartment.  I ended up staying in the hotel for a month.  I was nervous staying at the hotel because it was so expensive and I knew I wouldn’t be able to stay there for 6 months.  I found an apartment eventually.

When I went para-sailing for the first time, I was nervous and excited.

I was scared to become a travel nurse, but I did it anyway.  I wanted to be a travel nurse.

I was scared to do my first poetry reading, but I did it anyway.

I was scared to do things by myself.  That led me to not going on vacation for 9 years.  I went zip-lining, whale watching, horse back riding, and traveling by myself.

The key to having courage is to freak out and do it anyway or being scared and doing it anyway.

I don’t regret any of the things that I have done that I was scared to do at first.

I was scared to take the steps to make myself a better version of myself.  I was nervous and scared to try new foods.  I’m still scared to try bell peppers.  There are still some sitting in my refrigerator.

I’m still scared to learn how to swim.  I paid for swimming lessons in Hawaii and only went to one lesson.  I know the reason that I’m scared but I’m still having problems getting over it.

Some people have called me courageous.  I do know that I am but if they could hear the conversations that I have with my life coach, then they would know that I still get scared to do things.  Almost every body has something that they fear.

What would happen if you did something that you wanted to do but were always scared to do?  Think of how you would feel when you finally did that thing.  I bet that you would feel proud of yourself, just like I did.

Now I know that when something scares me, I need to do it anyway.