Do you validate?

In response to yesterday’s reflection on Week 2 Acts of Grace where I remembered I forgot to remember to give gifts of words often enough during the week, Mark Kolke of Musing’s and other writings, shared a video of a speech on validation by Lance Miller.

Lance’s speech was brilliant enough to garner him 1st place in an International Toastmasters competition.

In his speech about learning the value of validating other people, Lance says, “I began to find something I could stamp on everybody I met. That little bit of goodness. That little bit of brightness.” As in, I looked for something positive in each person I met, and then I told them what I saw.

Imagine if, we all went through the world searching for the positive in each person we met.

Imagine if, we told them what it was we saw that made such a difference in our eyes.

Imagine if, we did the same for ourselves.


You tell yourself the positive things you heard about yourself throughout the day — instead of the negative.

Last week, I received lots of positive feedback and while I won’t share my list I encourage you to make one for yourself.

I will share what my beloved said that still resonates in my heart and soul. We were talking about being real. I commented on how sad it is that we feel the need to adjust ourselves and sometimes shift who we are to ‘fit in’ to the world and different situations.

“You don’t change who you are to fit in with people or situations,” he said. “You are always true to who you are.”


My soul danced. My spirits lifted. My heart swelled up in love and joy.




All of these are the lifeblood of living passionately in the moment of now.

I am blessed.

Imagine instead though if I had stayed stuck on something that didn’t feed my soul, didn’t lift my spirits or fill my heart with love and joy.

Imagine if I’d held onto that feeling of having ‘missed the boat’ when I realized I’d forgotten to put the laundry in the dryer — and it now reeked of 3 day old dampness?

Imagine if I’d held onto that feeling of being ‘stupid beyond words’ when I took Beaumont for his walk one night and forgot to roll up his onesie so he could pee without getting it wet? (He’s wearing a onesie because he had the big ‘snip-snip’ operation last week and he’s not supposed to lick the incision.)

Or forgetting someone dear to me’s birthday? (which as I type that line I wonder about the accuracy of that phase ‘dear to me’s birthday’ and remember — it is someone very dear to me’s birthday today!

Imagine the self-talk that could ensue from all of that. I could be black and blue with words of condemnation!

It’s important to learn from our mistakes. It is also equally important to not get stuck in the negative self-talk our mistakes sometimes evoke. It’s important to not keep repeating the ‘you are so stupid’ or the ‘what a loser’ messages. We become what we tell ourselves and telling ourselves over and over again about our faults, creates the loss of our true selves.

Mistakes are opportunities to be reminded to pay attention. To listen up. To step into the moment. They are not meant to be opportunities for self-flagellation.

So, if you have trouble giving yourself positive self-talk, begin with validating others. Begin with telling those you meet about the wonderful things you see in them, and know — you cannot see it in another if you don’t have it in you.

It takes one to know one.

It takes awareness of the value of what you appreciate, to know the value of what you appreciate.

I appreciated C.C.’s comment so much because within me is the desire to know I am always walking true to who I am.

That desire lives within him too. Otherwise, he wouldn’t appreciate it in me.

As Lance Miller says in his speech, “A common denominator of all humanity is the fact that we are human. We are by nature imperfect. It takes no special talent to find an imperfection in another person. But every person goes through life wanting to be right, wanting to be valuable. Find that. Bring it out in them.”

Let’s bring it out in ourselves too.

And this short 16 minute film is one of my all time favourites. It may have also inspired Lance Miller. I’m hoping so because he inspired me, as did Mark.



Go ahead…Click

The View Through My Window This Morning

The View Through My Window This Morning

I got blown away this morning by one short paragraph. Imagine, all it took to stop my heart, deepen my breathing and open my senses wide open to the truth were a string of vowels and consonants strung together to create a vision of wisdom for my soul to feast on.

My blog-friend Val Boyko shares a quote and photo from Zen philosopher Thich Nhat Hanh on her blog this morning entitled, That Particular Moment

The quote she shares begins with, “When something upsets you, when something happens that is not to your liking in your family or your community, you want to change it right away.”  What Thich Nhat Hanh writes afterwards is so simple, so elegant so filled with loving kindness putting it into practice cannot help but create a better world for all.

Go ahead…. Click.

Photographer and a new blog find for me, Mary Hone, shares beautiful photographs of the journey she and her artist husband, Al Hone, are taking on backroads of America with their dog and fifth wheeler on her blog, Tales from the Backroad. On Tuesday, Mary asked for help with votes in a competition she’s entered at Fine Art America. It’s a simple and elegant way to make a difference today simply by clicking on the title above each of Mary’s photos and voting (you need a FB account). You’ll make a difference today and give a feast to your eyes and all your senses.

Go ahead… Click.

Yvonne, at The Presents of Presence, is a breast cancer survivor and a woman of deep faith and beauty. In Wasting a Mind Away, she writes with loving kindness about caring for her Aunt Mable whose mind has been devastated by loss and disease.

Go ahead… Click.

Mark Kolke, the man who originally inspired me to begin blogging 8 years ago, has a blog today on a decision coming down from the Supreme Court of Canada today on Assisted Suicide. A touchy, divisive and important conversation is being held right now on our Eastern slopes to decide, do we or don’t we allow those who are standing helplessly by while loved ones struggle to breathe, ease their pain and suffering. Mark’s post, There Will Be Change, is worth the read. Let’s hope those who make the law of our land agree.

Go ahead… Click.

Have a wonderful Friday!

Let your heart run wild


Art Journal Entry Jan 5 ©2015 Louise Gallagher

Art Journal Entry Jan 5
©2015 Louise Gallagher

I love layering when I paint. I love combining words and images, colour and texture. This painting was created in my art journal. The words were added in photoshop and are from my journal.

I am not sure which came first. The painting or the words. Or if they evolved together.

It doesn’t matter how they unfolded. What matters is, they did.

It is part of the flow. Of being in the process versus thinking about HOW I am going to make it happen.

Sometimes, like when I’m painting or writing, I find myself in the flow, at one with its unfolding and I feel embraced and supported by grace and ease.

Other times, like when talking with someone about something that holds an emotional charge, it is a bumpy ride fraught with energetic discourse that doesn’t flow all that smoothly. It is only when I come back to the page, either written or visual, that I find myself again effortlessly easing into the flow that was always there, awaiting my return.

No matter the measure or pace of my journey, whether I willingly surrender my resistance to being present or not, when I allow myself to awaken to the evolutionary impulse to create better, to create more of what unfolds my human condition in Love, miracles happen, art appears, words become my truth.

The other day, while having lunch with my friend Mark of Mark is Musing, he asked me, “Do you know what you’re going to write when you sit down at your computer in the morning?”

I laughed. Seldom do I have a plan for what I’m going to write. Often, I begin with the words, “I wonder what will appear today as I write…” As long as I keep typing, the letters form into words, the words into phrases, the phrases into sentences until eventually, I see the wholeness of what was unfolding through me when I first sat down to type.

“I then go back and delete the beginning thoughts and simply allow what appeared to be present. I seldom edit. I simply let it be.”

It is always a mystery and a miracle to me.

It is always a journey of letting go of fear and trusting in the process.

May you journey through Love today. May your heart be filled with joy. May your body be at rest. May your mind be at One with all that is when you let go of imagining what you need to be or do is anything other than surrender to Love.