Thursday, October 27, 2011

We Are the 99% (song) posted by Occupy Boston

Trying Out the Handmadeology Brand Exercise for Mama Love Flower Essence Aromatherapy

Handmadeology is a craft professional's blog offering tips and suggestions for having a successful business. Today they asked people to consider how they would define themselves if they took away every specific product in their shop. They listed three phrases to get started and something in it appealed to me. The phrases are:

•My single most important intention for having this business is…(this is your mission)

 •My secret personality quirks are…(hint: these are those things about you that seem to come up often in a conversation or you find friends calling on you for)

 •Describe a time in your business when you felt the most alive or vibrant…

Okay, here it goes. 

My single most important intention for having this business is wanting to bring relatively low cost, powerful, safe and effective tools to people for their health and well-being with a specific focus on how mental and spiritual attitude affects the emotional and physical. I don't believe this is ALL health is about. I think diet and exercise and not getting hit by cars or flying projectiles at peaceful demonstrations helps, too! But I have found enormous benefits from working on the emotional and mental levels for my physical well-being at times in my life when I couldn't afford the typical and ineffective medical approaches to the same problems. Even doctors say that as much as 90% of the concerns people see them for are caused by or exacerbated by stress. And studies show that people with a strong spiritual focus don't get sick as often and recover quicker when they do. So that's what my Mama Love business is all about.

My secret personality quirks are… hmm, are they really so secret? Friends call on me the most for listening and advice. And not just (or even typically) psychic/intuitive advice! Long before I was willing to come out of the closet about that one, I was the person in any setting people turned to to get help and clarity about things bothering them. So it's a natural tie-in to my flower essence aromatherapy work to offer healing sessions and flower essence consultation, too.
     Another quirk coming out strongly these days is a political one. Call it the Libran Sword of Justice (I'm an October baby) but I really get steamed about anything that interferes with the health and well-being of the planet and its inhabitants. The soaring cost of medical care, combined with a very poorly regulated insurance industry, is a big part of the bankrupting of America. Add insult to injury by attempting to over-regulate traditional herbal remedies and methods people have used to take care of themselves for hundreds of years and you have one very pissed off Mama Love! If something should happen where flower essence and aromatherapy products come under the gun, my brand would not be affected because I would switch to educating people as to how to grow their own medicine chest and make use of it safely and effectively in their own backyard. (And I'm not talking about marijuana here either -- I'm not a user... although... what's wrong with using it for healing is beyond me!)

Describe a time in your business when you felt the most alive or vibrant… sigh! Alright. Before I started my business I was writing a book about flower essences and developing ways to help people learn to use them effectively (including a flower essence self-awareness deck that I still haven't finished). Then I got all caught up in "making a living" and all my focus turned to marketing. I grew my business to the point of having my products in more than a dozen stores across the country and had dreams of being the Bert's Bees of flower essence therapy. Then the recession hit and that was all she wrote. Half my wholesale accounts went out of business. The other half cut way back and I'm pretty much back where I started only worse because now my day job barely pays my rent.

I know from a lot of experience that attempting to make a living as a writer pretty much sucks (financially) unless you somehow win the jackpot so going back to the idea of writing a book and such is a bit demoralizing. But I'll be thinking about the possibilities.

Good exercise to get me thinking today!

By the way the name of my Etsy shop has recently changed. It's no longer MamaLovePerfume. Instead it's MamaLoveHealing which more accurately reflects what I do.

My main website, Mama Love Products, remains the same.

Monday, October 24, 2011

Socialists and Lesbians, Occupy Slogan

Calling Every Protester A Socialist Is Like... print
Calling Every Protester A Socialist Is Like... by paulnsheryl

Not that there's anything wrong with being a Socialist! Or a lesbian.

Protest Apron

Sunday, October 16, 2011

The Movement Occupying Around the World!

Occupation Protests in the United States
Growing Occupations in Europe
Madrid, Spain  

Standing Together 99% Strong




Find at more at Occupy Together. org.

Wednesday, October 12, 2011

We're Offering Everyone Our Book for Free!

I guess it would be hard to miss how focused I've been on the 99% Movement. I feel quite personally affected by this and what has led up to it. In fact, it's all in the book Paul and I wrote called "Waking Up in the Great Recession Mormon Desert." Paul and I feel so strongly about the immense importance of this that we want to give away the download version of the book for free. Get yours here and feel free to send it far and wide: http://www.healingcommunication.com/WAKING_UP_FILE.html 
---
Our book, "Waking Up in the Great Recession Mormon Desert" is a memoir.  Following a series of recession-related miscalculations, it follows the two of us, a spiritual counseling and healing team, from our original home in the beautiful New Age, ultra-progressive town of Santa Cruz, CA to the unspeakably plain eastern Arizona desert. The timing is immediately after the election of Barack Obama and the passage of Proposition 8 and we coincidentally and inadvertently find ourselves in an ultra-conservative Republican Mormon community. The result is at turns poignant and funny and eventually leads to a spiritual wake-up call that shows the importance of connecting the political and the personal in our task of developing spiritually on the planet.

In the conventional world of physical book publishing this one might be described as Michael Moore meets Deepak Chopra if the story was told by a female blogger like Julie Powell (Julie, Julia). The book touches on issues millions of Americans have been going through—losing a job, a business, a home, facing bankruptcy. But it is also a story about choosing to live a creative, purpose-driven life, being guided by faith, and finding one's voice in a world that calls out for an end to polarity, injustice and hate. Ultimately, it is about community and reclaiming one’s connection to the greater whole.
By the way, some really cool people reviewed an advance copy of this book and said some really great things about it. Take a look:

"WAKING UP is a fascinating account of two seekers trying to find sense and sanity in our contemporary world, which often seems deliberately designed to make people crazy.  The lessons they learn can help anyone find balance in our chaotic culture." ~ Larry Dossey, MD, author of  HEALING WORDS  and THE POWER OF PREMONITIONS

“This book is a winner.  It has everything a good book should have:  suspense, excitement, pathos, joy, laughter—-lots of laughter—and great characters you care about and can genuinely root for!  And it's non-fiction!  But what it has most is love and wisdom.  Profound, heart-opening love and wisdom. It is hands down one of the best books on spirituality and its role in meeting the challenges of our time that I have read. And did I say that it's funny, too?  Be good to yourself and read this book.  Be good to your friends and buy them a copy.” ~ David Spangler, author of FACING THE FUTURE and SUBTLE WORLDS: AN EXPLORER'S FIELD NOTES.

"WAKING UP explores the trials and triumphs of living a creative, purpose driven life combined with an exploration of the political polarities present in current society. Skillfully written as both  personal and political, the story of this couple 's healing points to the resolution that just might help us all." ~ Frederic Luskin, Ph.D., author of FORGIVE FOR GOOD
--
The print version is still available for sale as are Kindle and Nook versions. The version we offer for free is a pdf with full color photographs and artwork. Please share it widely!

In Solidarity with Those Brave Enough to Stand Up and Let Their Voices Be Heard


Find at more at Occupy Together. org.

Thursday, October 06, 2011

Saturday, October 01, 2011

Music for the Revolution?



Pele Juju, a band that used to be based in Santa Cruz, CA, came to my mind tonight.

If the Revolution Isn't Televised the other 99% Will Video and Spread It Anyway



If 50 Tea Partiers held a picnic the news media would be there. This is New York city yesterday!

Occupy Our Democracy

The revolution is spreading. 95 cities in the U.S. and 15 cities around the world have joined the movement to stand up to corporate greed and take back our democracy. Find at more at Occupy Together. org.

Monday, September 26, 2011

Saint Jerry Garcia Grateful Dead Novena Prayer Candle

Something new in my Etsy shop!

Do you worship at the altar of Saint Jerry? Or perhaps you'd like to celebrate the Day of the Dead Grateful Dead style. Either way, this unscented 8" tall white wax votive candle is made for you.

Featuring my own artwork printed on glossy label stock with the following prayer written on the side:

"Reach out your hand if your cup be empty.
If your cup is full may it be again.
Let it be known there is a fountain
That was not made by the hands of men."

Want one? You'll find it here.

Interested in other prayer candles? Visit this section of my Etsy shop: http://www.etsy.com/shop/MamaLovePerfume?section_id=10472279

Sunday, September 18, 2011

Rally on Wall Street Deserves Attention

Yes, Virginia, there is a protest going on! Wall Street, THIS weekend.


Saturday, September 17, 2011

Occupy Wall Street Protests in Full Swing

Despite lack of coverage by major news channels there IS a protest by 10s of thousands of people on Wall Street right now. It's nonviolent and peaceful but determined. This first video shows some of the numbers of people there today but there's no useful sound. The second video is almost laughable in that it's SO peaceful they're all staying on the sidewalk! But the sound is good. They're chanting "We are the 99%" and "Pay Your Share!"



Tuesday, September 06, 2011

Claiming the Change -- An Excerpt from "Waking Up in the Great Recession Mormon Desert"

An excerpt from our latest book...

Claiming the Change

Everything changes. That's a Buddhist tenet I've never felt very good about. Change isn't a favorite thing of mine to negotiate. But lately change is what we all need, what the Obama administration was elected to provide, and what many of us may be pinning all our hopes and dreams upon.

Yesterday I was walking with Paul down one of the country roads close to our house. It's quiet here. Paul wrote about the natural quieting down this creates in our lives and how it helps one look at the contents of one's thoughts in a recent blog. I got a great illustration of how that works while on this walk.

At first I enjoyed the scenery, the pleasant weather, and my optimistic point of view. “How nice it is to walk out here.” I thought. But then I had another, more insidious, thought process come in. “Oh, it's nice enough now. But what if this is where you had to stay forever? What if you and Paul never get out of this situation? How would you feel about this landscape then? Wouldn't it be boring to do this day in and day out?”

I immediately felt frightened, desperate, and almost completely miserable. . . and then caught myself. “Look at what happened here!” I thought. I went from happy and content to miserably discontent within the shortest time imaginable and NOTHING had changed except my point of view. My rogue thoughts had almost ruined my day but I decided to choose another way.

I experimented with other thoughts: “Maybe we'll love it here and will want to stay. Maybe we'll go. Everything changes. Why would I think this couldn't change, too? Maybe, I won't even want it to!”

Forever is a limiting point of view. The present moment always contains the seeds of change. Paul warns me that trying to predict the future, or worrying about it based on the false predictions my fear-based mindset would try to create, is a foolish thing to do. The best way to predict the future is to claim it. “Claim it” is the phrase my guidance insisted on when I was writing this sentence. I had planned to say “create it” but that’s not good enough. We need to insist on what we want to create. To intend it so firmly we believe it is our birthright. To claim it means “This is mine. This belongs to me and I deserve to have it!”

Waking Up in the Great Recession Mormon Desert is available directly from Paul and me here.

Monday, September 05, 2011

Psychedelic Sunflower Digital Mixed Media


Here's my latest addition to the Etsy shop I share with Paul. This is a photograph of a sunflower I have never been satisfied with. This time I decided to really go to town with it: layering effects using multiple filters in Photoshop, tweaking the color balance enormously, adding color where none existed, adding lighting and texture, and finally just drawing and painting on top of the whole thing. Then I had what I wanted. And it was very satisfying to bring more of the artist out into the forefront instead of just insisting on doing it the "easy", less time-consuming way.

Saturday, September 03, 2011

Peep and the Boys Revisited




I like the brush strokes that can be seen in the details. Can't decide whether I like the program for wider views. I'll have to see one of these printed out large to be able to tell, I think. And for some reason Blogger is cropping the right side of all of these. Not sure what to do about that either.

Paul and the Hummingbird


I'm exploring new techniques for creating digital oil paintings. This is a composite of two photos, one by Paul and one by me. He used to sit on our front porch in Santa Cruz and take photos of the hummingbirds who liked the Mexican Sage planted there. This one bird found him and his camera fascinating and would hover in mid-air cocking its head while Paul took one photo after another.

Wednesday, August 24, 2011

Waking Up in the Great Recession Mormon Desert is on the Nook

Our book is on the Nook! That's an eReader from Barnes and Noble. It looks good there, too. I REALLY appreciated that their interface allowed me to see what the ebook might look like on their eReaders before I approved it for sale. No such luck on the Kindle! But it's great that it's there, too.

Saturday, August 20, 2011

Mind / Body / Spirit -- It's All One

As a flower essence aromatherapy product maker it's easy to mislead people into thinking that essential oils, herbal remedies and homeopathic remedies are "drug" therapy. Natural ones but still an activity chosen to enact a change without required conscious participation in the cure. "One pill makes you smaller..." You know, that kind of thing.

And yet everything has an effect on our mind/body/spirit. Just think: did you see a butterfly or a beautiful bird or rainbow recently? Did you feel better just seeing it? OMG! A temporary cure for depression! And, in fact, if you chose to test your biochemistry on that level you could detect tiny levels of biochemical compounds that DO affect brain chemistry on a positive level released into your bloodstream just because you had a temporary upliftment in thought. Seeing butterflies, pretty birds and rainbows must be drug therapy! But that's not how it works. Even the FDA wouldn't attempt to regulate it.

Health is the interplay of what we think divisively as Mind / Body / Spirit. It's not divisible but just focusing a bit on one aspect of that whole will always affect change in the others.

Example:
  • Get enough rest, exercise, fresh air and sunshine, eat properly for your type (not everyone should eat meat, some people need some) and, more likely than not, you won't be depressed.
  • Or work directly on the emotional aspects of depression and any beliefs behind that (the Mind part), and you'll want to eat healthier, get fresh air and exercise, have more time for friends, etc. All the things that come naturally to any young child free of pain and suffering! One affects the other and the whole gets happier and more resilient as a result.
When someone comes to Paul and/or me for spiritual counseling attention with a tendency to depression I always recommend beginning with all of the above! Work with the underlying beliefs installed in childhood AND walk, get fresh air and sunshine, etc.

As for flower essence aromatherapy... natural elements of specific flowering plants lift us up, make us feel good, and shift the functioning of our natural biochemistry to aid us in a multiple of ways. The brain responds to the input as it does with everything we ingest -- whether that's food, drink, what's on TV, what our best friend happened to say, and all the rest. In the case of flower essence therapy the active constituents of the flower essences themselves are too minute to do anything except sub-atomically. It inspires the body/mind to release what no longer fits in relationship to what it has received. The old negative holding doesn't fit with the new input coming in—the body/mind naturally releases it. When you have the right fit -- that's where professional input comes in (from me, of course) -- the formula can act like a healing balm and the body/mind/spirit heals itself.


Saturday, August 13, 2011

New Artist-Designed Shoes

Wear the weeds! High-tops featuring my illustration "Multicolor Weeds" - inspiration from the backyard.

Tuesday, August 09, 2011

Buddha of the Painted Kaleidoscope


Being present with all this colorful existence isn't always easy, especially when we see riots breaking out in Great Britain and know, deep down, that the conditions that led to this situation are mirrored in our own political situation.

I read a blog tonight by someone who lives in London. She said the young people being interviewed are saying similar things: there was a peaceful march of 2000 people and nobody reported on it. But now everybody is being interviewed. Despite the horror, the whole world is noticing the problem now!

And what's the underlying problem from this blogger's point of view? Grinding depression-era economic conditions while the wealthiest 3% (in that country) reap the benefits. What does the destruction do? Nothing. Except wake people up to the power of what people who are united in a common misery can do. Imagine if they were to march on Washington and demand that the circus in this country come to an end. Imagine if we all do.

Buddha of the Painted Kaleidoscope: Mirrors reflecting mirrors, refracting reality and slicing it back into a myriad of colorful patterns and designs.

Sunday, August 07, 2011

Spiritual Counseling and Healing with Psychic Insights in Chico, CA

We're here! In Chico, CA and ready to meet you! Take advantage of our limited time introductory offer and work with one or both of us at the bottom of our very reasonable sliding scale.

We do a special brand of spiritual counseling and healing work combining spiritual guidance and psychic insights with one-on-one teaching, more conventional counseling techniques, hands-on or off-the-body energy healing, guided visualizations and exercises to take the work further on your own. It’s an interactive experience rather than a conventional treatment or psychic reading, appropriate for couples as well as individuals.

Find out more and set up your session today!



Friday, August 05, 2011

Help Promote Our Book (Please)

It Takes a Village to Get the Word Out About a Self-Published Book

And we could use your help. Maybe you're not interested in this book but certainly there are a few people on your list, in your book clubs, or in your communities who would be. Tell them, would you? Send them to this link. 

Who Would Be Most Interested?
  • Memoir lovers, and lovers of true-life adventures.
  • People curious about us.
  • People who love storytelling mixed with humor and philosophy.
  • Self-employed people.
  • Artists and writers.
  • Alternative health practitioners.
  • Gays and lesbians, their allies, people who support gay rights.
  • Santa Cruz folks, Californians, people from Arizona.
  • People making community online, marketing their goods and services online, or those attempting it.
  • People who care about community, love, peace, and social justice.
  • People concerned about the horribly polarized political scene, and what might shift things.
  • People living through their own Great Recession sagas.
  • Spiritual but not religious folks, New Age thinkers, meditators, Hindus, Pagans, Buddhists, progressive Christians, Jews, Mormons and anyone who cares about freedom of religion (or freedom not to have one).
  • People who still care about life purpose and wanting to contribute to the highest good of all concerned.

NEW BOOK: Waking Up In the Great Recession Mormon Desert

Paul and I have a new book out. It's called WAKING UP IN THE GREAT RECESSION MORMON DESERT and we'd like you all to have one. This has been a long time in the making but we think it's worth it and the great people who reviewed an advance copy of it seem to agree. For example, David Spangler who was the previous director of Findhorn and has sometimes been called the father of the New Age movement had this to say:

This book is a winner. It has everything a good book should have: suspense, excitement, pathos, joy, laughter—-lots of laughter—and great characters you care about and can genuinely root for! And it's non-fiction! But what it has most is love and wisdom. Profound, heart-opening love and wisdom. It is hands down one of the best books on spirituality and its role in meeting the challenges of our time that I have read. And did I say that it's funny, too? Be good to yourself and read this book. Be good to your friends and buy them a copy. ~ David Spangler, author of FACING THE FUTURE and SUBTLE WORLDS: AN EXPLORER'S FIELD NOTES.

We're the "great characters", by the way. The book is a memoir and it follows our path from our original home in the beautiful New Age, ultra-progressive town of Santa Cruz, CA to a predominantly ultra-conservative Republican Mormon community in the eastern Arizona high desert. The timing is immediately after the election of Barack Obama and the passage of Proposition 8 (the law repealing gay marriage in California). The result is at turns poignant and funny and eventually leads to a spiritual wake-up call that shows the importance of connecting the political and the personal in our task of developing spiritually on the planet.

Read more about it and get your copy here.

It's available as an inexpensive instant pdf download or as an autographed physical book, both directly from us. It is also available on the Kindle and soon other places as well.

Tuesday, July 26, 2011

Whose Hand Is This?!!!

The last four years of Republican stonewalling and holding our government hostage is coming to a head this weekend and I can't help but feel like it's about time! But what does Boehner do as a rebuttal to the assertations that Obama made about this in his latest speech about the debt ceiling talks collapsing? Despite us all watching for four years as the Republicans have played this game he said something to the effect of "Who, me? There's no crisis here. If there's a stonewalling happening in government it has nothing to do with me and the rest of the Republicans in office!"

It reminds me of gropers on the Boston subway system. I used to live near Boston and took the subway to work everyday. At rush hour we would all be packed like sardines in the subway cars and sometimes some pervert would get his kicks molesting any woman he was smashed up against. But if you'd confront them the response was always the same. They'd look around like you were mistaken and make a gesture and say something to the effect of "What are you talkin' about? Are you crazy, woman? What are you lookin' at me for?"

So I developed a better strategy. Any time I felt some pervert's hand at my crotch I didn't confront. I'd grab his hand, hold it above my head and yell: "Whose hand is this?!!! I found it in my crotch!!!!"

I recommend we all start using this approach with the Republican coup being orchestrated right in plain sight. Call them out. Call them to task. Make them squirm and make it impossible for them to get away with it.

A Facebook post is being circulated right now and I think it's just the tip of the iceberg of what a lot of us are feeling:
Repost and then CALL YOUR CONGRESSMAN if you agree: Entitlement? I've PAID CASH for my Social Security insurance! Our benefits aren't some kind of charity or handout! Congressional benefits--premium Federal health care, outrageous retirement packages, 67 paid holidays, three weeks paid vacation, unlimited paid sick days--now THAT'S welfare!
We have paid for the benefits the Republicans want to get rid of. It's been deducted out of every one of our paychecks our entire lives.

Monday, July 25, 2011

Focussed Attention to Put Manifestation in Action?

I'm packaging up an order for one of my wholesale accounts today and found myself musing about why it seemed so unusual. The bulk of the order was for "Releasing Worry and Fear" and "Focussed Attention." Releasing Worry and Fear is no surprise—that's always on everyone's list. It's my bestseller. But what's interesting about the request for "Focussed Attention" is that previous orders from this customer always included unusual amounts of "Manifesting Life Purpose" and that one wasn't on the list this time. "Focussed Attention" appeared in its place.

So it's just conjecture but is it possible that the people who used to buy "Manifesting Life Purpose" over and over have shifted into needing different kinds of support? I'd guess that's true because look at what's in my "Focussed Attention" formula:

Madia for focus and concentration
Peppermint for mental alertness and clarity
Shasta Daisy for synthesis of creative vision
Blackberry for the will to bring one's ideals into reality

"Manifesting Life Purpose" is about helping you remember what that life purpose is and beginning to take your first steps in that direction. But "Focussed Attention" is for when you're going for it all the way and need to stay on the trail.


Wednesday, July 20, 2011

Gorgeous Sunset in Santa Cruz


Paul put one of his older photographs up on Zazzle today to make it available as framed or unframed print or print on canvas. I really love this one.

Thursday, July 14, 2011

New Art in My Mama Love Etsy Shop

I'm starting to add artwork from the flower essence Tarot deck I've been working on to my Etsy shop. Today's card is for Borage, the flower for encouragement and upliftment. I use it in my brand new flower essence aromatherapy body, bath and massage oil, Soothing Angry Skin, because the anger and frustration that stems from discouragement can be a factor in upset skin.

Tuesday, July 12, 2011

Angel's Trumpet for Faith Through Hard Transitions

Deepak Chopra put this quote up today on his Facebook page: All fear is ultimately the fear of mortality in disguise –-the fear of change. Coincidentally, I just posted this image for Angel's Trumpet on Etsy from the flower essence Tarot deck I'm creating. It's the flower for spiritual surrender to the power of the Universe to hold you through intense transitions. People use it to ease a person's passage into death but it's equally applicable to resurrection within any stressful transition where CHANGE is the hardest thing you face.

Sometimes in times of great crisis it helps to remember to surrender -- to let go, let God. Letting go of your old life, your old patterns of being, can allow you to rise up and be born anew.

I've made this image available to be used like a visual affirmation to remind you to allow God / the Universe / Angelic Helpers / your Higher Self to take the reigns and assist you to live the new life that's waiting for you. Or just enjoy it for the fun of it! I'll send you a signed print I made myself if you buy it through Etsy. You can also find it on a greeting card, mug, t-shirts and all kind of other stuff through my Zazzle shop.

Spiritual Counseling and Healing Services You CAN Afford!

Paul and I have specials right now on our spiritual counseling and healing services. To help us get re-established in a new town EVERYONE has the opportunity to work with us at the bottom of our sliding scale regardless of income as many times as you like. This applies to phone sessions ANYWHERE in the world. We also offer short email tastes of what we do very inexpensively. http://www.healingcommunicatio​n.com/

Wednesday, July 06, 2011

Larch is For Optimism and Self-Confidence


A reader of our last newsletter, about the value of failure and the possibilities that come from it, asked if I could write about flower essences in that same context. Now of course, it matters quite a bit whether we're talking about a "failure" about to happen (OMG!), one in the process of happening (OMG! OMG! OMG!), or the aftermath when you're looking at the rubble and trying to figure out how to pick up the pieces again.

For those OMG (oh my God) moments, nothing really beats Rescue Remedy. It helps you come back down into your body when you're jumping out of your skin, calm down, and get grounded so you can be with what's happening and respond appropriately.

But that's not really what that article was all about. That article was about the aftermath of a disaster, when what you once counted on and maybe even took for granted is gone. How do you rise again and create what you need to move on?

I've been musing on this a little on and off for a few days now when David Spangler's latest email newsletter landed in my in-box. In it he talked about Hope with a big "H". There are people in the Zen Buddhist community spreading the idea that "hope" is a dirty word, that it takes you away from the reality of what's really happening in the present moment. I can understand the impulse behind that—being with the reality of what's happening in the present does seem like a good idea. But this notion of hope being counter to spirituality has always rubbed me the wrong way. Apparently, it bothers David Spangler, too.

First he quoted Paul Gilding, former head of Greenpeace International and author of The Great Disruption: “Hope is not a question of personal philosophy. In the face of uncertainty, operating from a stance of hope is a strategic and practical response. It is a way of approaching the world. As environmental writer Professor David Orr said of it, “Hope is a verb with its sleeves rolled up.””

Then Spangler goes on to say this: "In my language, hope opens doors that despair closes. Hope feeds the fires of imagination that despair dampens. Frankly, a “realistic” acceptance of “the way things are” rarely creates change or benefits humanity. The blessings of our world would not exist were it not for the power of hope which leads people to dare the unknown and make choices that open possibilities and explore potentials."

Hell, yeah! I agree. So I decided to look at what flower essence most embodies this sense of "we can do it!"—the tapping into hope and optimism for a positive outcome. And Larch is what came to mind.

Larch is for those whose self-confidence has been shaken to the core, for those who fear the future, who fear the worst is the most likely outcome, for those who expect failure to be the end result of any further effort they put in. That's not the way to get up again and create a happy future. But the desire to keep from failing again and feeling the humiliation and lack of self-esteem this failure engendered has to be worked with somehow.

Somebody famous or not so famous who gets quoted a lot these days said: "Failing is only defeat if you don't stand back up." Larch is the flower essence I'd most recommend to help people do it. I use it in several of my flower essence aromatherapy formulas: Releasing Worry and FearComfort and Joy, and Open-Hearted Loving. And oh yeah! Doing New Things with Confidence! How could I have forgotten that?!!!