5 Essential Life Skills, Part 1: Remember Who You Are By: Eve Hogan

Through the course of over 20 years of personal and spiritual growth study and my own personal work, I have identified five essential life skills that are critical for creating a joyful life and healthy relationships—with your loved ones, coworkers, yourself, and with Spirit. The steps are: remembering who/what you really are, self-observation, letting go, realigning with your authentic self, and choosing actions in alignment with who you are and what you want. Over the next few weeks I will explain more fully each of these skills, beginning now with Step One—remembering who/what you really are.

In my experience, your true essence is one and the same as Spirit’s essence. We think we are the ego—our personality, our body, our looks, our roles, our jobs–when in actuality, we are Spirit—loving, lovable, creative, wise, compassionate, forgiving, adventurous, capable beings who have egos, personalities, bodies, roles, and jobs. The challenge is that most of us either forget this about ourselves, or we never knew it in the first place. Thus for some, “remembering” who/what you really are may actually seem more like “discovering” who/what you are for the very first time.

Merely setting the intention of discovering this aspect of our selves sets Step One into action. The more you pay attention and look for the evidence, the more likely you will be to start noticing the signs of spirit at play. The signs may show up in serendipitous moments during which you are surprised by your intuition’s accuracy, or the manifestation of something you were just thinking about, or a prophetic dream, or the clear answer to a prayer. It may show up in your talents or creativity or problem solving abilities or with a great idea. A sense of who you really are may emerge when sitting quietly in nature or in a moment of clarity or laughter.

Our authentic selves are always with us, trying to serve us, and when we have a moment of getting out of our own way, we are able to experience this aspect of ourselves. I call it “Divine Indigestion”—that gnawing feeling that magic is in the air, that there is something more to life, and more to each of us than what meets the eye.

Scuba diving is a great metaphor for this in that no matter how rough the surface conditions of the sea are, if you just drop down a few feet below the surface, a diver is treated to calm and tranquil waters. From this vantage point, the diver can look up and see the surface and watch the waves breaking above—without being a part of the chaos. Our true essence is the same. No matter how much drama we have going on in our lives—love problems, money or health challenges, work issues—simultaneously our spirit is calm, connected and capable. Our spirits are unaffected by our ego dramas.

The Chartres Cathedral Labyrinth is also a great reminder of who we are, and I believe a blueprint of the human experience. Just like the labyrinth, we all have a sacred center—still, unwavering, peaceful, connected. We all also have the chaotic qualities of the twists and turns that cause us to feel lost, even though we are not. Our sacred center is surrounded by our love drama, money drama, health drama, etc., and we get so caught up in the ego-dance that we forget (or fall asleep) to the memory of our true essence—the sacred center, our sacred center.

When we become adept at recognizing the true essence of our beings, we also become adept at recognizing that which is not us. It is said that when Michelangelo was asked how he managed to carve the statue of David out of a huge block of marble, he explained that he simply visualized David and then carved away everything that was not David.

Getting to know ourselves as divine spirits having a human experience allows us the opportunity to begin to “carve away” everything that does not truly belong to us, and that which doesn’t truly serve us.

How do we get to know this authentic aspect of who we are? Through self-observation—which is the second step and the focus of my next blog post. If you want a head start, simply begin to pay attention to the difference between who you really are and who you pretend to be. Notice your self-talk. Notice what you say to yourself and to others, as well as how you say it. Notice the blessings and gifts that are bestowed upon you daily. Notice your talents and creative abilities. Notice your feelings. Sit in silence and simply listen. Invite your true essence to come forward and create the space for It to do so. You just may be pleasantly surprised.

Intellectual Foreplay Question: Who are you?
Eve’s Love Tip: When you think you are a sinner, it is natural for you to sin. When you know you are a divine being, you hold yourself to a higher standard.

Eve Eschner Hogan is a relationship specialist, and author of several books including The EROS Equation: A SOUL-ution for Relationships. In Real Love with Eve, she shares skills, principles, and tools for creating healthy, harmonious relationships—with friends, family, lovers, co-workers, and the world at large. Her uncommon approach to common sense will help you sail away from ego battles and into the calmer waters of real love. Learn more about Eve’s Heart Path retreats at sacredmauiretreats.com.

Eve Eschner Hogan Healthy Relationship with Eve Hogan, Introduction

Relationship Expert Eve Hogan explains why she is passionate about offering relationship tools, skills and love advice. She invites you to send in your love, relationship and marriage questions. She offers wisdom that they don’t teach in school.

The Giving Way to Happiness: Stories and Science Behind the Life-Changing Power of Giving Jenny Santi (Author), Deepak Chopra (Foreword)

We often focus on how our gifts can help those in need. But the act of giving actually improves our own lives as well. In The Giving Way to Happiness, Jenny Santi overturns conventional thinking about what it takes to be happy by revealing how giving to others—whether in the form of money, expertise, time, or love—has helped people from all walks of life find purpose and joy. Drawing on the wisdom of great thinkers past and present, as well as cutting-edge scientific research, Santi makes an eloquent and passionate case that oftentimes the answers to the problems that haunt us, and the key to the happiness that eludes us, lie in helping those around us.

This book is filled with inspiring stories told firsthand by Academy Award winner Goldie Hawn, Noble Peace Prize winner Muhammad Yunus, maternal health advocate Christy Turlington Burns, Teach for America founder Wendy Kopp, philanthropist Richard Rockefeller, environmentalist Philippe Cousteau, and many others from all over the world. Despite their diverse backgrounds, they have all found unexpected happiness and fulfillment through giving.

In addition, Santi reveals:
– How altruism involves far more than suppressing basic selfish urges. Rather, we are wired to give, as it activates the same pleasure centers of the brain stimulated by food, sex, and drugs
– How helping others is a proven means of dealing with adversity and processing grief
– Practical, universally applicable lessons on what kind of giving makes people happy and what doesn’t. How do you discover giving that is unique to you and makes you feel good?

In this inspiring book, Santi reveals giving is the secret to living a life that is full of meaning, purpose, and happiness.

Kids don’t really walk around saying, “I want to be a philanthropy advisor when I grow up.” My journey to what I do now was not a straight line but a series of dots that I have only recently been able to connect.

I was born in Manila, the capital of the Philippines, a very Americanized society.
Almost all the nursery rhymes I learned were in English, including my favorite,
“Fly, Fly, Fly the Butterfly.” I attended Catholic school for fifteen years: eleven in
a primary and secondary school run by Augustinian friars and four in a Jesuit
university. Manila is staunchly Catholic and very traditional; if you did well in
school (which I did even though I was extremely shy), you very well ought to be
a doctor, a lawyer, or a banker (which my parents sort of were). My dad handled
the family businesses, a manufacturing company dealing in metals, and a rural


Filipina philanthropist bares ‘sure way to happiness’

With numerous trials and inevitable sufferings in life, the path to genuine and lasting happiness seem to be uncertain and elusive to many.

Spiritual Direction: Learning to Listen to Your Soul ~ Caroline Myss

One of the most beautiful ways to understand the essence of Spiritual Direction is that you enter into a dialogue with the intent of letting your spirit reveal to you the story your are living that is your life. No one is born knowing who they are or what they are meant to do in every moment of their lives. What we are meant to do is search. We must each find our way and along the way, discover who we are, what we believe, what we value, what holds meaning for us and what does not, how to love and who to love. We are our own mystery.

Every single experience in life, indeed every moment, is filled with some way to learn even one more thing about ourselves, to see who we are and how we act or react to the world around us just a bit more clearly. But one of the richest ways we truly come to understand who we are and all that we are – from the darkness of our struggles to the fullness of our gifts – is through sharing our inner self with another person whose personal calling in life is to serve in the trusted position of a Spiritual Director. A Spiritual Director knows what it means to be a Sacred Witness to another person’s life story and to ask the right questions that inspire self-reflection. And a Spiritual Director knows how to assist you in illuminating the dark night passages that visit everyone’s life somewhere along the line.

I have been with my Spiritual Director every week for fifteen years. It is my sacred time, my holy time. I rely upon this time for my own inner work, my own time of soul-searching. I share this with you because in this workshop I will introduce the refined art of Spiritual Direction to you. It is my intention to create an atmosphere of trust and intimacy in which you can participate in a quality of sharing and spiritual exploration that often results in redirecting how you understand the journey of your life. Perhaps you will come to realize that your challenges are not so overwhelming or that you have more inner resources than your ever realized. Or you may find the beginning threads to a quality of faith and prayer you have been seeking for years. Or, as so often happens, you may come to the workshop for reasons you know nothing about and leave feeling full of grace and renewed with optimism and hope.

And speaking of hope, I hope you will consider coming to this very special CMED Workshop. I know that it will be one that holds purpose and meaning for every participant.

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