(804) 928-3189 BethHedquist@gmail.com
The Gateway to Gratitude

The Gateway to Gratitude

It’s almost Thanksgiving again. Time for the G-word. Yes, Gratitude.   Gratitude is a beautiful spiritual practice that can quickly shift your perspective from a place of victimhood, despair, and anger to one of appreciation, contentment, and serenity. It can allow you to more deeply receive the blessings that are already present, and in so doing manifest more abundance.   But if you are experiencing a crisis, a tragedy, or living amidst chaos, jumping too quickly to gratitude can be inauthentic, a spiritual bypass that avoids the necessary step of feeling your emotions and holding them in compassion. Sometimes others will try to move you too quickly to gratitude because they cannot hold their own pain, and therefore are uncomfortable around yours.   If you’ve found yourself unable to genuinely feel gratitude in spite of your blessings, or feel downright anger at the suggestion that you “should” feel grateful, that may be the clue that there is a step that needs to be taken before gratitude can arise.   I’m not implying you have a free pass to spew cruelty and hatred on others, or wallow in self-pity and victimhood. But I would invite you to slow down, to view your circumstances from the perspective of your soul’s journey, and explore the spiritual meaning of the crisis you are experiencing. It is an opportunity to shift from the hard pain of resistance, defense, reactivity, and dualistic thinking, and surrender to the soft pain that is vulnerable, transformative, and healing.   Our Thanksgiving Holiday remembers the Pilgrims, the courageous souls who embarked on a difficult journey to a strange land...
Are We Addicted to Unfulfillment?

Are We Addicted to Unfulfillment?

Amidst the ups and downs of the apparent story of our life, I believe we each have a deeper purpose, a greater story waiting to be discovered and told.   We are here to claim, embody, and bring forth the unique divine spark that resides in each one of us. And we can spend our entire lives searching for that divine spark, searching for our gifts, searching for our purpose, and get so addicted to the searching that we never make the transition to the finding, and the fulfillment that results from giving that to others. I call it the “addiction to unfulfillment.” Often we first recognize it in our attempt to find something outside ourselves that will finally make us complete.   Have you ever experienced an “addiction to unfulfillment” in your life? That feeling that you get from reaching for something you can just never quite grasp?   Maybe it manifests as that story book relationship that will one day make you whole. Or the job that will finally fulfill your creative and financial longings. Possibly you are seeking that final spiritual awakening, the one that will bring eternal bliss. Or maybe you ache to find your true purpose in life.   What keeps you from claiming the truth of who you are right now, and giving that to the world? What is it that keeps you seeking, longing, reaching for something that will finally render you good enough, so that you never claim the greatness that you already are?   I periodically come face to face with my “NO” to God, to others, and to life. I...