Do Your Choices Empower You?

I had an interesting discussion with someone this week about whether or not we choose the experiences we have in our lives. WARNING – ABUSE TRIGGER.

Spiritual ContractsBoth of us were abused in some way when we were younger, though she much more than I. Through my readings of people like Sylvia Brown and some work I’ve done with Akashic Record clearing, I have come to believe that we choose the experiences we are going to have before we are born. I describe it like a huge buffet table of experiences – “I’ll take a little of this, a bit of that, and a big helping of that!”And yes, we even choose the ‘negative’ experiences.

There is a popular philosophy among people who explore spirituality. . .that describes a spiritual contract we enter into when we begin our various incarnations. In that contract we agree to accept and experience everything which will happen to us in our lives.

~Greg Gourdian, from

The way I see it, from our soul’s perspective, there is no good or bad, there is only experience. My soul knows this incarnation is temporary, and something that may have a profound effect on my experience of this life has a much smaller effect on the experience of my soul. Knowing that I would not be truly able to know what joy was without experiencing some sadness, my soul chose to experience a wide range of things, even though I may not necessarily enjoy the experience.

For my friend, saying that she chose her abuse experience on some level was very triggering for her. It implied that she “asked for it”, that it was somehow her own fault that she was abused. When she explained this to me, I felt horrible! That was not the message I wanted to give at all!

I don’t like the idea of experiences randomly thrown at me by some impartial Fate. For me, the idea that I chose my experiences is empowering. I chose what lessons I was going to go through. I may not have chosen exactly all the details, and yet I still chose the experiences. I still have free will and choice in how I respond to the experiences that I am given.

By taking responsibility for the choices I believe I made before I came to this life, I also have the power to choose how I respond. And if I take the time to respond rather than react, chances are better that I will experience more joy and less sorrow.

Taking the abuse as an example, as a child, I did not ask to be molested. As a soul I may have chosen to experience abuse so I could later be better able to have compassion for others who were abused. Or I may have chosen to understand the importance of learning to say NO! from a place of power. As a teen, I did not ask to be emotionally and verbally abused by my boyfriend. As a soul, I may have chosen to experience an unhealthy relationship so I could better recognize a positive relationship later in my life. Or I may have chosen to learn how to set better boundaries to keep myself safe.

I am grateful to my friend for helping me get clearer about my beliefs around choosing my experiences. I am also grateful to her for raising my awareness that this idea could trigger some people’s negative experiences. And, if she’s reading this, I am very sorry our conversation triggered you in that way.

Have you been abused by anyone? How does the idea that you chose your experiences sit with you? Please share your comments below!



To Spelunk, or Not to Spelunk

That’s such a cool word…spelunk. My spell checker doesn’t seem to like it. Still, just say it out loud a few times. Spelunk.

Today is Labor Day, a day when we celebrate all our hard work with an extra day off. For me, it’s just a regular day off, since I don’t work on Mondays.

Horne Lake CavesAnd I have a decision to make. A friend of mine has invited my family and others to go spelunking as a group at Horne Lake Caves on Vancouver Island. It’s something I have wanted to do ever since we moved to the Island, more than 10 years ago.

On the other hand, my to-do list is about a mile long. With co-workers leaving at work, rehearsals for a play I am in about to start, and getting ready for my upcoming workshops and retreat, it doesn’t look like it will be getting shorter anytime soon.

Then again, this is the last weekend of the summer.  Tomorrow, my boys go back to school.  And I haven’t taken any vacation this year, beyond the odd day or two here or there.  It would be nice to have a fun family day before the craziness of September begins.

I could probably get a lot done if I stayed home while my family went out for the day.

And I would really miss being there with them.

All work and no play makes Mary a dull girl. Given that I have a very busy September ahead of me, I think I’m going spelunking. All my work will still be waiting for me when I get back.



PS. Walks Within is going to Maui! Do you feel like something is missing in your day to day life? Like there is something more you would like to be? Come with me February 19-25, 2011, and reveal the REAL you. Register before November 30th and save an extra $400!