Happy belated New Year!HeloLooking

I’ve been thinking about New Year’s resolutions lately.

The tradition of making a resolution on New Year’s began over four-thousand years ago.  Historically speaking, resolutions were make to the gods.  In Rome, they were made to the god Janus, after whom the month of January was named.  

Over the centuries people have resolved to lose weight, to exercise more, stop gossiping, to be a better person, become more involved in their community and on and on and on.  The types of resolutions are endless.  People have been passionate about making their resolutions and standing by them.  

But are resolutions really kept?  Let’s be honest, here.

FinnJumpingWhile it’s been a long-standing tradition to make a Resolution (with a capital “R”), it’s been an equally long-standing tradition to break one.  It’s not that people don’t want to better themselves or try to make healthy changes or even just stand by their decision.  It’s a simple matter of stick-to-it-ness and creating new habits.That’s the hard part.  It’s creating new habits that’s tough.  Soon after beginning to modify one’s life to meet a new resolution, a day comes when acting on that resolution slips the mind and then guilt sets in.  Then soon that Resolution has gone the way of the Dodo.

Another New Year’s, another broken Resolution.  We feel guilty, anxious and, often, like a failure.  

And here’s the crux of it: we aren’t failures or lazy or any other negative thing we throw at ourselves.  It’s a simple matter of patience and time.  LeiaJumping

Simply put, a resolution (lower case “r”) is the goal of creating a new habit.  We all have a lot of habits, both good and bad.  But a new resolution takes time to become a habit.  If your resolution is to start drinking a glass of water every morning, it’ll take about 21-days for that to become a habit.  If you’re trying something a bit harder it’s going to take longer.  If, for example, you resolve to exercise more it could take 66-days before it becomes habitual.  66-days can be a long time and those 66-days will always be the hardest.

PoeJumpingThere’s another factor that we tend to put on ourselves and that’s the pressure of having made a resolution to begin with.  That adds a level of pressure that no one needs and that we can seldom live up to.  So it sets us up for failure more than for success.  Those thousands of years of resolutions, broken and lived up to are a lot of pressure.

I decided long ago that New Year’s resolutions are bunk.  They’re way too much to try to live up to.  When I want to make changes in my life, I don’t want thousands of years of pressure on me.  I want as much positive energy and support a I can get.  

I continually try to improve myself and my life but I won’t make a resolution.  I will, however, try to focus on creating a new habit and I’ll allow myself to stumble and make mistakes; that’s only human.  I try my best to be patient and hang on for those 66-days till my new habit sets in.

Does it always work?  Oh, heck no!  But that’s actually part of the beauty of it; the striving and the effort.  

So let’s all get together and resolve to not make Resolutions!  But if you want to try to create a new habit, I’ll be happy to lend moral support!

4 up on 12 11 20 at 2.14 PM 4I recently had the honor of speaking to a group of 8th-grade students about Breathing and Mindfulness.  I was nervous, I was told they had spent some time with meditation and mindfulness before, but I had no idea what to expect.  

I was thrilled to discover these kids were practicing meditation and mindfulness in class every week – even during distance learning this year.  So instead of talking about the basics of what is mindfulness we played with breathing exercises, talked about finding your calm center fast, and how mindfulness can be a superpower to make you more confident, focused, and in control in every situation.

What a fantastic group of students, it was an honor!

HeloJoeBabyPoeThis is a joyous season.  It’s filled with love and laughter, cheer and joy.  

I am one of those people who like to be told or to say, “Happy Holidays”, but I like being told, “Merry Christmas”, too.  I wish people, “Happy Holidays”, certainly not because I have anything against Christmas, but because there are multiple holidays being celebrated.  Christmas and New Years are only two of them.  I want to honor everyone, their beliefs, and their celebrations.  It’s all about love and joy.

JohnStanleyI’ve looked them up and there are a lot of holidays in the month of December.  Being a non-religious Spiritual Center, we rejoice in all of them!  I wanted to share some of the holidays with you.  There are far too many for me to list them all, but I’m going to share the biggies and some that stood out to me.  

I would like to wish everyone who may celebrate any of all of the holidays a very, very:

Happy Hanukkah

Happy Winter Solstice

Happy Christmas

Happy Kwanzaa

Happy New Year

 And if that’s not enough celebrating for you, try:

Happy Rosa Parks DayTeresaBoardman
Happy National Mutt Day

Happy Special Education Day

Happy National Cookie Day 

Happy National Rhubarb Vodka Day

Happy Dewey Decimal System Day (I may be dating myself with this one)

Happy National Ambrosia Day

Happy National Cocoa Day

Happy Maple Syrup Day

SuzanneAkronHappy National Sangria Day

Happy Boxing Day

Happy National Bicarbonate of Soda Day

Please don’t be offended if I left off one of your favorite holidays.  There are just so many and my fingers are getting really tired from typing!

But we, the Great Conjunction family which includes myself, Joe Thornton, John Michael Thornton, Teresa Kinney, and Suzanne Olesko, would like to wish each and every one of you a very happy and joyous holiday season.  We are grateful for you, your participation, and your support to help us keep going and conducting our outreach programs.

From our family to yours, have a happy holiday season!  Love & Joy!

I certainly won’t even begin to speak for you and I won’t even try to speak for John, but 2020 has been one mean year and I’m glad it’s almost over!JoeBrace

I know that I have been incredibly fortunate while others have had things much worse than I, but it’s been a pretty tough year.  Still just speaking for myself, my year began with learning I’d have to have spinal surgery immediately followed by the death of a very dear friend then segued into a global pandemic in full self-quarantine mode.  I eventually had my surgery, leaving me essentially incapacitated for half a year.  

All in all, I’ve tried to rise to every challenge thrown at me and even tried to learn lessons along the way.  There have been times this year I know I succeeded, but there have been occasions where I let things get the best of me.  But I'm still here and I’m ready to begin again.  

I know we’re all, essentially, been in the same boat; time to leave all this behind and head toward a better future.  To help us do that, we’ve asked a member of the Great Conjunction family to guide us all in a two-part workshop beginning this Tuesday, December 8th.

IMG 5481Victoria Price will help us to examine and take stock of 2020 in the first part of this workshop called “A Box Full Of Darkness: Reconcile & Release 2020”.  Together in this workshop through journaling, guided visualization, and simple rituals, we’ll open our boxes full of darkness and consciously, and with commitment, prepare to move toward the light. 

Victoria, if you recall, is not only the daughter of Hollywood legend Vincent Price, but is an interspiritual/interfaith minister, author, and motivational speaker.  Victoria is the perfect person to guide us through this experience.

The second half of the workshop will take place on January 19th entitled “Everything Is Waiting For You: Welcome A New Year With Intention”.  

The entire two-part workshop is $32.  To attend the complete workshop, sign-up here:  https://greatconjunction.org/events/eventdetail/124/-/a-box-full-of-darkness-reconcile-release-2020-part-1-with-victoria-price

If you wish to attend only the second half held in January, please sign-up here:  https://greatconjunction.org/events/eventdetail/125/-/everything-is-waiting-for-you-welcome-a-new-year-with-intention-part-2-with-victoria-price

I hope you can join us for a cathartic and educational workshop.

I, for one, am ready to move forward.

It’s been one heck of a year, hasn’t it?  We’ve experienced lock-down and self-isolation, a global pandemic, an embittered presidential election campaign, had to learn new ways to stay in touch, to communicate, and even new ways to work.  And here at home, spinal surgery and a long, somewhat arduous recovery process.  It’s been an emotionally taxing and even physically exhausting year for us all.

Our presidential election process has finally come to a close.  And we have made history in two important ways.  More people voted in this election than ever before (bravo and good for you!) and we’ve elected our first woman (of color) into the vice presidency.  

JoeJohnWe need to take a moment to think and to follow the lead of our new president-elect and realize that this is now a time to heal.  We need to heal as a nation, as a brotherhood, and as a planet.  We must all do our part to be compassionate, loving, and live with open hearts.  We are all one.  Not just one nation, but one world, one people.  We need to lift each other up and realize that by doing so, we all can rise up and we can succeed.

When founding Great Conjunction Spiritual Center, we decided to make it part of our mission to try and raise the vibrational level and help everyone to grow.  To achieve that goal, we offer a variety of avenues to learn and expand our personal horizons.  We have three such events coming up that we’re really excited about and each of them are lead by returning members of our Great Conjunction family.  

Sara SachsFirst, this month on Tuesday, November 17th we have Psychic Medium Sara Sachs of Pittsburgh for the fourth year in a row.  Everyone is invited to join us for this online evening of messages from Spirit.  Those who join us may receive special messages from departed loved ones.  Those of you who have attended Sara’s Victorian Flower Seances in previous years know just how gifted Sara is and how amazing the experience can be.  You can sign-up using this link:  https://greatconjunction.org/events/eventdetail/126/-/gallery-readings-online

Our next event is especially unique and is a two-part workshop being facilitated by our friend Victoria Price.  The first part of the workshop entitled “A Box Full of Darkness: Reconcile & Release 2020 (Part 1)”.  The goal of the first part of this workshop is to help us better understand and reconcile our feelings and attitudes about the epic year of 2020.  The second part of Victoria’s workshop, “Everything Is Waiting For You: Welcome A New Year with Intention (Part 2)” is about taking a new approach to a new year by affirming our intentions and learning simple daily practices that will allow us to continue moving toward the light and living wholly and with love.

JohnVictoriaJoeThe dates for this two-part workshop are Tuesday, December 7th from 7:30 pm to 9:00 pm and Tuesday, January 19th also from 7:30 pm to 9:00 pm.  Sign-up for both of Victoria Price’s workshops for only $32.  https://greatconjunction.org/events/eventdetail/124/-/a-box-full-of-darkness-reconcile-release-2020-part-1

Let’s plan to make 2021 just what our new president-elect suggests, a time to heal.  Let’s begin to heal each other, our nation, and our planet.  And I’ll continue to heal my spine.  Together we can live in hope and in love.

Please remember to stay safe and wear your masks.  I wish you all a very happy Thanksgiving!