The Power of Your Spirit
Self Improvement, Inspirational, Spirituality
Losing our connection with Spirit may be the biggest problem we suffer from today. We want to face our challenges and disappointment with grace; be creative and inspired; feel excited by a purpose; and live fearlessly through an intuitive, guiding wisdom. We want to love and feel loved, and realize genuine peace . . . but as much as we desire a significant spiritual breakthrough and long to know our Divine selves, we’re still not making the commitment that will ensure our success.
We want the gifts, but we’re not engaging in the practical work necessary to obtain them, so we remain stuck and more frustrated than ever. We know a lot about the power of Spirit, yet we aren’t actually experiencing it. And we cannot do so through intellectual pursuits alone. In fact, we can only experience it through a deep, intentional daily practice of connecting with Spirit.
When you truly make this connection, you’ll realize that it’s the most authentic, lasting power you have in your life. In this enlightening book, spiritual teacher Sonia Choquette will show you that even though you can’t control the outside world, with the power of your Spirit, you can create a sense of purpose within that brings about profound contentment and personal peace—no matter what is going on around you.
In my own life, when I am not connected to spirit – and ego holds the reins of anything I do – life is lonely, hard, and nothing seems to work. If I can just wrangle myself back to letting spirit be in charge, everything shifts – and life is effortless, full of grace, and filled with the synchronicity that always means to me that God is in charge.
“Wrangling myself back” to spirit – Aye, there’s the rub. Ego does not give up its hold easily.
So, when I received my copy of Sonia Choquette’s new book, “The Power of Your Spirit: A Guide to Joyful Living,” I thought, “I am open and willing to hear whatever you have to say, Sonia!” I was in one of my particularly strong ego, fear, loss periods – and anything that would help me to get back in spirit’s saddle and let the Divine take over the reins – well, that is always something I want to hear!
Ego really did not want to give up control. It took me until page 68, when I read the following: “We all eventually reach a moment in life when we must come face-to-face with a force greater than our ego, or intellect; and, at that point, we’re invited to recognize the holy force, the Spirit. People struggle against this because it feels as if we’re being asked to hand over our power. On the contrary, it’s actually an invitation to get to know and accept the most powerful, brilliant, authentic essence of ourselves.”
Yes, I know that moment.
There’s an expression, “My best thinking got me here” and I can tell you that “here,” for me, at that moment, was a place of sadness, loss, defeat, and what I saw as failure. I felt as if I had nothing more to lose and, Sonia’s book notwithstanding, I was feeling that the divine was nowhere near and certainly not listening – and I was even angry about that.
I came on that passage and it landed for me as just what I needed to read. That’s when I started to pay attention. I went back to the beginning and started over again.
“The Power of Your Spirit” takes the reader on a journey through the four stages of awakening to spirit and allowing the divine – our own spirit – to guide us daily to the greater good for all. The ego wants us to win – “Me, me, me!” is the ego’s cry. The spirit wants life to be great for us and for all. We cannot “win” if someone else has to lose in the process. There is no grace in that.
The four stages are: “Awakening to Your Spirit,” when we go from being spiritually unconscious to realizing that there is another dimension – a spiritual one; “Discovering Your Spirit,” when we read everything spiritual we can get our hands on, take spiritual courses, and listen to spiritual teachers (my particular balliwick); “Surrendering to Your Spirit,” which means “moving beyond the parameters and perceived safety of your ego and turning your well-being over to the mysterious, unlimited realm of intuition”; and “Flowing with Your Spirit.” In this last stage, “your ego steps aside and allows your Spirit to completely take over.”
Since I wasn’t doing such a good job of handling my life on my own, those last couple of stages really called to me. It was time to stop reading, taking courses, and just talking the talk. “Letting go”, whenever it happened for me, always worked – and perhaps this book, arriving when it did, was the proof that divine guidance was stepping in to remind me that it was time, once again, to “walk” the talk and let spirit take over.
I was especially intrigued with the last stage, about “being in the flow.” I’ve experienced that before and it has been magical. I’ve often wished that I could make that happen more often. Ah, ah…? “Make that happen?” There’s the catch. “Making it happen” is the ego’s game. Being in the flow is “life experienced with ease, grace, peace, healing, and connection.” When that’s not happening, you’re not in flow. When life occurs as peaceful, magical, graceful, and you find yourself in mystical situations that you cannot explain and they work effortlessly – that’s being in the flow. It’s not something to force. It’s something to fall into.
As Sonia Choquette says so eloquently, “Flow is faith in action: the synthesis of your true Divine nature merging with your faith in God, the Universe, and life.”
It gives new meaning to the expression, “Go with the flow….”
When the book arrived for me to review, I wondered if Sonia could have done it again? Would I enjoy reading her new book since I've read several books by her? The answers to these questions were "Yes!" and "Yes!"
Sonia is a great storyteller and she weaves in stories that teach us from the examples of what lessons she or the people in the story learn from what has happened in their lives.
She had me curious from the first two paragraphs of the introduction. In them she describes a movie (that I've seen) which is about a tour guide in Greece who has lost her kefi, which is a Greek word for "spirit."
Sonia says, "The film reminded me that the idea of losing your connection to spirit isn't all that unusual." She goes on to say that she encounters many lovely, generous, and caring people who feel lost, disillusioned, and powerless.
In this book, she guides readers through four stages she says we must pass through on the way to reconnecting with our own spirit.
For most of us the journey is gradual but she says it's also possible, though rare, to move through all four stages in one dramatic shift.
In "How to Use this Book" Sonia says, "Take time and enjoy the process. Ponder the questions and stories throughout." She also says to be sure to implement the daily practices for at least 40 days.
One thing she repeats through the book is that you must change what you do and not just read books expecting your life to change. She gives an example of a woman who kept reading more books but wasn't putting what she read into practice. It's with a daily practice that we change the frequency of our vibration.
Sonia reminds us that we are all students. Each of us faces challenges and the stories in this book can help us learn through OPE (other people's experience).
In this book, Sonia stresses the importance of how we breathe. Shallow breathing – and even holding our breath – can keep us from feeling connection with our spirit.
"The preamble to our awakening is marked by a growing sense of overwhelm, exhaustion, anxiety, restlessness, impatience, irritation, depression, and complete victimhood. In other words, it's a feeling that life is a struggle, and there's nothing we can do about it."
Throughout the book Sonia has questions for us to answer which are best written in a journal. She also says to invite your spirit — your most authentic self — to answer them.
After answering the questions she guides you to close your eyes and to calmly breathe through your nose in a deep way that feels relaxed and wonderful. In fact, as she says, it can help you feel calm, connected to Source, peaceful, and energized all at the same time. She calls this "connected breathing" and it is a technique she explains in the book. I love how it makes me feel! Sonia suggests you do it for 15 minutes. It is a way of breathing that connects the breaths and connects you with your spirit. I've heard that the word inspire means to breathe in — and it feels inspiring to breathe this way.
Reading about "connected breathing" helped me to realize it's what I do — and feel — when I do my 15 minute meditation each morning. As Sonia says, using a timer allows you to relax. What I realized while reading this part of the book was how good it feels to do this "connected breathing" at other times during the day — or night — any time I notice my breathing has gotten shallow or that I'm feeling tense and find I'm holding my breath.
Sonia says, "To surrender to the power of Spirit, you must listen to your heart and admit how you feel, first to yourself and then to others, even if your truth makes you or those around you uncomfortable, angry, or afraid." She goes on to say, "To live in alignment with your Spirit is to live your truth and build your life upon it."
There is an inspiring quote by Earl Nightingale that Sonia included in the section on the flow: "All you have to do is know where you're going. The answers will come to you of their own accord."
The book ends with an inspiring list of choices we can make as part of our daily practice. Sonia suggests we write the list in our own handwriting on a beautiful piece of paper and read the things on the list out loud daily.
Do I recommend this book? YES.
The first phase is recognizing the Universe and the spirit you posses and connecting each through a daily practice.
Realization begins that the Universe is a never ending source of creative inspiration and how our lives are interconnected to help each other. This acknowledgement motivates us to become conscious to a living an authentic life.
The importance of mediation is discussed and helpful tips are suggested.
The daily practice of mediation and centering your breathing helps to relieve anxiety, fear and begins the participant on the road to relaxation and peacefulness for yourself and others.
The second stage expands to not only gaining more knowledge about yourself as an extension from the Creator but spiritual growth comes from applying experiences and the desire to discover other areas of the spiritual realm rather than depending totally on reading and classes.
The third stage is a submitting to the flow of the Universe and laying down trusting logic and your control. During this phase most stop living in the past and future but pay attention to the present and trust more in the Universe rather than being affected by what others think.
Practicing the daily lessons brings the reader to stage four where trust is built fully in the Universe and Divine inspiration becomes a reality. Inspirations to help others and live in peace rather than being motivated by fear brings a rich and spirit filled life.
I read this book twice. It was easy to understand and interesting which kept my attention and my desire to continue to read it.
The second time I read it was read in the way the book was intended to be read, as a guide.
It is thoughtfully written with helpful practices and tips blended with the authors, family and friends experiences in life which back up the points expressed in this book. Those searching for a book in which to expand in spirit would find this book enjoyable and helpful.