Giving Yourself Permission: Why Can’t You?

Copyright 2015 Artisans Workshop Designs


We made it to Friday—Yay!!  Give yourself a pat on the back!

Earlier this week we read some quotes on giving yourself permission to do that which your heart and soul is calling you to do.

Instead of looking outside yourself and to someone else or some organization for permission, have you looked to yourself, looked within, to give yourself permission?  If you’re waiting for someone else or an organization or group to give you permission, I am sorry to say, my Friend and Pep Pal, but you probably will be waiting for a very long time.

So, instead of waiting—or while you are waiting—why don’t YOU give YOURSELF permission?

If this doesn’t sound like a good idea to you, why not?

What is holding you back from giving yourself permission?

Are you afraid you’ll look foolish or stupid or that you’ll embarrass yourself?  Are you nervous about what others will think?  Are you concerned about not fitting into your life within your comfort zone?  Are you afraid of being ostracized or cast out or abandoned?

Are you concerned about having the skills or knowledge you’ll need once you give yourself permission?  Are you worried that you’ll have to do everything yourself and you’re barely keeping up now?

Take the time today and this weekend to get to the core of why you can’t and won’t give yourself permission to follow the whisperings of your heart and the urgings of your soul.  This is important work so make sure you do it!

After you come up with the reason or reasons of why you can’t give yourself permission, brainstorm things you can do to “solve the problem” of why you can’t.  Remember with brainstorming that all ideas are good ones even if they are outlandish, impractical, silly, wild, and the like.  Jot them all down because you never know how a piece of outlandish idea combined with a dash of the impractical idea along with a smidgen of the silly idea and sprinkled with the wild idea just might be the breakthrough, the eureka! moment you’re looking for!

Have fun with this!

Your Friend and Pep Pal,



Lessons from the Local Food Bank


Yesterday I was at my local food bank dropping off food and I started talking to the woman who worked in the food bank’s office. She was cheerful and had an upbeat attitude.  I asked her if she was ever dismayed by all the people that need help and how they probably couldn’t help everyone.

She told me that while it was true that they aren’t equipped to serve everyone who comes to them for requests—for instance, they can’t help people who need housing—all they can do is give people food.  I asked if that ever got to her.  She said that at times it did but then she said she reminds herself to focus on the positives:  the people they can help, and the good people who volunteer and donate to help them serve others.

The whole time we were talking, she was smiling and energetic.  I thought about the people coming to the food bank and dealing with her.  Let’s face it, her typical client isn’t there because they are millionaires and on top of the world.  The clients must feel discouraged, hopeless, and maybe even embarrassed.  To see her smiling face must give them a ray of hope and her focus on the positive must bolster their spirits.

I marveled at the true service the woman at the food bank was providing.

Her example reminded me of three important things:  

~Focus on the positive and what you can do;

~There are always good people who will reach out a helping hand;

~Smile because it can make a difference in people’s day.


I hope this little story inspires you to follow the example of the food bank lady.

Your Friend and Pep Pal,


Give Yourself Permission:  A Few Quotes



Another aspect of self-forgiveness is giving ourselves permission to live bigger than we have been.  Here are a few quotes to encourage, remind, and support us as we give ourselves permission to live the life of our dreams:


As we let our light shine, we unconsciously give other people permission to do the same. As we are liberated from our own fear, our presence actually liberates others. ~Marianne Williamson
Your own mind is a sacred enclosure into which nothing harmful can enter except by your permission.  ~Arnold Bennett
I’ve learned lately that no one is going to hand me a permission slip and tell me to take time out for me.  ~Wynonna Judd
I rarely asks people for advice or permission when I’m planning on doing something I feel strongly about. That only opens the plan up to be crapped on.  ~Anderson Cooper
Poor is the man whose pleasures depend on the permission of another.  ~Madonna Ciccone
Give yourself permission to have a big life.  Step into who you are meant to be.  Stop playing small; you’re meant for greater things.  ~Unknown


Your Friend and Pep Pal,


Forgiveness: People Who are Impossible to Forgive—Part 3


I came across several articles on the Internet that encourage people to take time to work through feelings and emotions during the process of forgiving.  The articles pointed out that, depending upon the severity of the hurt, it can take months or even years to move through the process to forgiveness.  The magazine Psychology Today had several articles on this topic and this one I’ve linked to is one of them.

Also, I found an article/interview of Father Richard Rohr, a Franciscan monk, in the Huffington Post where he talks about forgiveness.  I thought the interview was very good and I encourage you to read the whole thing.  

The best part of the article for me, though, was the last point he made.  He made an excellent point and I’d like to share it here:

The People You Can’t Forgive Can’t Fully Be Released Until You Find Something Better to Fill the Hole. 

“Releasement, which is just another word for forgiveness, doesn’t entirely work unless we have a larger comfort, a safe and more beautiful enclosure to move toward. If we only empty out, and do not refill with something better, there is still a gaping hole within us. The attempt at forgiveness will not go deep or endure. Without something positive, comforting and loving to fill that hole up (which some call grace), we’re left to depend entirely on willpower — and our willpower is normally very weak, especially on those days of loneliness, stress, tiredness and hunger. So we’ve got to keep our aloneness and emptiness filled with something loving and positive. This is the primary work of spirituality. I know that the word ‘prayer’ has been so trivialized, but it basically means refilling our souls with ‘Everything that is good and noble, everything that is virtuous and worthy of praise’, as Paul says in his letter from a Roman prison that could be called an early lesson in the power of positive thinking (Philippians 4:7-8). 

If we can find a way to live inside of a deep gratitude for our own undeserved grace and mercy, past hurts have very little power to cause us pain in any lasting way. They are not worth our time or energy. They are mere sludge and dredge in the great school and journey of life. The gratuitous surrendering of hurts (“forgiveness”), the refusal to make them our identity, is almost the heart of the matter. If you do not transform your pain, you will with 100 percent certainty transmit it to others. And, I am afraid, you will have pain! Both the Buddha and Jesus seem to say that pain is part of the deal, and its overcoming is the very shape of enlightenment.”  ~Richard Rohr is a Franciscan friar and the author of Eager to Love: The Alternative Way of St. Francis of Assisi and Falling Upward: A Spirituality for the Two Halves of Life.


I think Father Rohr’s suggestion applies not only to the hole left by releasing others but also applies to the hole that’s left when we release and forgive ourselves.

For me, forgiving myself and others frees up energy, mental space, and time.  I have more enthusiasm, more hours, and more thinking capacity to devote to steadily moving toward my dreams.

How about you?  How and with what will you fill the hole in your life? 

Your Friend and Pep Pal,


Forgiveness: People Who are Impossible to Forgive—Part 2


Friday we started talking about forgiving people who are really difficult to forgive.  In that post, I suggested to put aside the idea that we have to forgive the person that hurt us deeply and instead focus on forgiving ourselves. 

In my own life, I’ve found that we can’t really forgive anyone else—especially the unapologetic people—until we forgive ourselves.  As we forgive ourselves, forgiving others seems to automatically follow.

I came across this video of a portion of T.D. Jake’s sermon on The Stumbling Stage.  Although he’s referring to a passage in the Bible, I was stunned when I first heard it.  Here is a snippet of the portion of his sermon that left me speechless:




I never thought in quite this way about the hurts that other people have caused me.  T.D. Jakes is right:  my being stuck is not punishing them; all it’s doing is hampering me, causing me to limp through my life!  He’s right, too, that the people who hurt me have gone on with their lives.

Holy smokes!

This alone makes a GREAT case for focusing on forgiving yourself.

Let me know what you think of the ideas in this video. Thanks!

Your Friend and Pep Pal,



Inspiring Quotes to Start Off the New Quarter and New Week with a Blast


Happy Birthday to all who are celebrating their special day today.  You are AWESOME!


I thought these quotes were a great way to start off the new quarter—second quarter of 2017—and a great way to start off the week.


Jot down the ones that resonate with you and keep them handy.  Refer to them often throughout the week so that you can stay energized and enthusiastic.


Enjoy these quotes!


You can’t start the next chapter of your life if you keep re-reading the last one.  ~Unknown


When someone tells me “No!” it doesn’t mean I can’t do it; it means I can’t do it with them. ~Karen E. Quinones Miller


Take one teensy-tiny risk each day to strengthen your risk-taking muscle.  This way, when you need to take a bigger risk, your risk-taking muscle will be strong enough to support you.  ~Caitie Whelan


Don’t count the days; make the days count.  ~Muhammad Ali


If you don’t design your own ife plan, chances are you’ll fall into someone else’s plan and guess what they have planned for you?  NOT MUCH.  ~Jim Rohn


Develop success from failures.  Discouragement and failure are two of the surest stepping stones to success.  ~Dale Carnegie


Death is not the greatest loss in life.  The greatest loss is what dies inside you while you are still alive.  ~Unknown


Define your own life.  Don’t let other people write your life’s story for you.  ~Unknown


Be more concerned with your character rather than your reputation.  Your character is what you really are while your reputation is merely what others think you are.  ~Dale Carnegie


The elevator to success is out of order.  You’ll have to use the stairs, one step at a time.  ~Joe Girard


No matter how many mistakes you make or how slow your progress, you are still way ahead of everyone who isn’t trying.  ~Unknown


You will never become who you want to be if you keep blaming everyone else for who you are now.  ~Unknown


When someone tells you, “You’ve changed.” It might be because you’ve stopped living your life their way.  ~Unknown


No matter how good or bad your life is, wake up each day and be thankful for your life.  Someone somewhere is desperately fighting for theirs.  ~Unknown


Have a great week.  May it be the perfect set-up for a wonderful second quarter of 2017!

Your Friend and Pep Pal,


Back by Popular Demand: Sitting in Silence and Self-Care

This post was originally published on October 21. 2016.  It’s a popular post that people refer to often.  I thought it was quite relevant to the discussion we had yesterday about caring for yourself and not worrying about forgiving the difficult person.

Please enjoy this post.  I hope it helps you take the next step!

Your Friend and Pep Pal,

Lauren   🙂

Here’s another benefit of sitting in silence: it helps you clarify you’re thinking.

Not only does it help you hear and feel the Still Small Voice within—or the whisperings and urgings of your heart and soul, if you will—but the results of a practice of Silence will help you discern the difference between that which is yours to address versus what belongs to other people.

Once you’re able to clarify your thinking then you’ve taken a huge step toward self-forgiveness.

It’s one thing to recognize you’ve fallen short of your ideal and that you need to make amends and corrections. It’s a whole different thing to take the blame for something someone else has done (or not done) or for something that was beyond your control.

Taking the blame when it isn’t yours leads to unresolved and unchecked guilt which oftentimes then turns into shame. These are devastating. 

They’ll cause you to lead a life that’s far, far below your potential. To compound this, you probably won’t fulfill your Destiny.

Copyright 2015 Artisans Workshop Designs
Copyright 2015 Artisans Workshop Designs

If you don’t have a daily practice of Sitting in Silence even for a few minutes—it could be as little as 5 minutes because it does add up over time—then I urge you to begin one today. Ideally, sit for 15 to 20 minutes first thing in the morning and the last thing before you go to bed. But if that’s too overwhelming, then start with 15 minutes in the morning, the very first thing in the morning. It’s a great way to start your day!

You can do it! 

Your Friend and Pep Pal,