Andrea de Michaelis, Publisher

Photographer Debi Buck

That’s what we wanted to do with my friend.  We wanted to pre-pave happy new experiences by paving new neural pathways for her.  She would begin daily meditation and visualization to form new brain connections.  She already had a lot of strong emotion going, so she would begin training herself to channel the emotion in a new direction.

The way she’d channel her emotions in a new direction would be to have new thoughts at the ready anytime an old or contrary thought appeared, such as:

She would expect to be delighted. She would expect to run into interesting people. She’d begin to vibe in a new place by watching romantic movies and thinking "this could happen to me. I remember what that felt like and I’ll feel that again." She’d look at happy couples on the street or on tv and think, "this can be me, there can be someone for me. He might be closer than I think."  Other thoughts would surface and you drown them out by repeating to yourself the new thoughts, the new phrases, the replacement thoughts.

She knew it didn’t have to be a romantic partner.  She knew she could be fulfilled by a deep friendship.  She could watch Will & Grace and think, "This could be me. I can have fun, entertaining friends who love and support me unconditionally, and with whom I have a blast. That’s possible for me."

She’ll do these exercises throughout each day because it is the repeated thought that carves the neural pathway. The more she repeats the visualization exercises, the quicker she forms the new neural pathway and the quicker she will begin to have a new experience.

I’m excited and can’t wait to hear back from her.


The brain’s ability to renew and regenerate itself, even in old age, is called neuroplasticity. It occurs in our brains as we learn something new. You can improve the neuroplasticity of the brain by exercising it in the same way you exercise your physical body. Brain exercises you can fit into your daily life are intellectually stimulating activities, such as:
online courses
video games
solving puzzles
board games like chess, checks, backgammon

Challenge your brain by doing common tasks differently.
Break a routine
do something new
drive a new way to the store
navigate a new city
brush your teeth with your left hand
learn a new language
learn to play an instrument
learn to paint, to dance, or sculpt

Physical activity pumps up brain stimulating hormones. Mow the lawn! Dance! Cardio and aerobic exercises enhance learning and memory; they also prevent and delay the loss of cognitive function.  Resistance exercise helps form new nerve cells. Listen to music while exercising: Music doesn’t just motivate; it stimulates cognitive functions as you exercise.

Sometimes we mistake why someone is in our life

Chemistry means we have karma to work out and this person can help us do that. I did a session with a friend last week who is disappointed in her partner. They talk about the life they are going to build together but when it comes right down to it, there’s no movement forward unless she does it on her own. He’s very good with his words but there’s no follow through. She loves him and he’s finally got a job where he can contribute, but she’s wondering what her guidance is telling her to do. "I know I should go toward what feels good, but I feel so many things," she cries, "I can’t tell what feels good and what feels bad. When the times are good, the times are good, but I am tired of there being no follow through and no movement forward unless I do it. Help me understand what I am being guided to do." I knew all she needed to do was to get clear on some issues and release some resistance and then she’d be able to intuit for herself what her inner guidance system was signaling her to do. 

I know her partner and while as a friend he’s not who I’d have chosen for her, I’ve also seen how she’s changed since he’s come on the scene. She’s become more creative and expanded her business into new products and accessories she creates with her children, whom she spends more time with. His job keeps him halfway across the country for months at a time and in that time she blooms like a creative madman.

Still, she feels cheated that they have so many discussions about dreams that she is now realizing may never come true, unless she makes them come true. And if she has to do all the work, she reasons, she doesn’t need him. That breaks her heart since he’s the first man who’s made her feel alive in years and she thought they had something.

I had her remind me of why they initially got together and how it felt, and the words she used were "hopeful" and "excited about the future" and "that anything is possible and we can do it." Then she talked about how they created one business after another, each time she being the one to begin it based upon an idea he came up with and never followed through on. Some succeeded, some failed, depending on how involved she let herself be in it.

It was easy to see the pattern. So often we mistake who someone is meant to be in our life. We are quick to think that physical chemistry means this is my soul mate or this is my foe. Chemistry means we’ve got some karma to work on and this person – for better or worse — can help us do that.

She had simply mistaken his purpose. He may just have been the muse needed to kick start her and make her come alive again. Maybe his purpose in her life was not to be a mate, which he was a poor one, but to be a motivator and cheerleader, which he was a great one.

Had she not prematurely decided upon the label and role of a "romantic partner," she might have had a very different experience with him. Had she instead given him the label of "good friend and creative advisor," she would be thanking him for motivating her on to so many projects. Yes, she thought she was doing these projects "for them" but the fact is, the projects were each as successful as SHE had time to put into them.

So she could choose to be pissed off that he wasn’t a do-er, that he really just liked coming up with ideas but didn’t care to expend much effort in actively achieving any actual goals. Or she could take it as an a-ha moment that she now realized something she didn’t realize before: The Universe placed him in her path to inspire her and motivate her to find new ways to express herself and find joy in the expression of it. SHE was the one who decided oh, this must be my soulmate, thus placing a mantle of responsibility upon him, one that he never agreed to and didn’t even know existed.

It’s not his fault for not being emotionally in the same place as she was, and for not having certain qualities she wants in a partner. She had simply mistaken who he was meant to be in her life.

She said she felt much better about him after considering that and felt bad for all the time she spent resenting him for not following through. She now knew that following through was never his job. She also realizes that if they were on the same wave length, he wouldn’t be clear across the country, he’d be right here with her. Everybody is right where God wants everybody to be. It’s never any other way. I love helping friends figure things out for themselves. We’re all One but it takes a village!

Enjoy our offering this month.

Hari Om.