Mustard Seeds To Mountains

 

Hey guys 🙂

I am feeling so blessed right now. It’s amazing how God answers prayers that you didn’t even know needed answering.

Since turning back to God nearly a year ago, it’s surreal at times how much my life has changed for the better. I have to say, aside from meeting my soulmate, going back to church has been a big part of this change.

Before that moment, you would not have seen me in church. I had no interest. In fact, I was cynical about the idea.

2 Timothy 3:1-5

But understand this, that in the last days there will come times of difficulty. For people will be lovers of self, lovers of money, proud, arrogant, abusive, disobedient to their parents, ungrateful, unholy, heartless, unappeasable, slanderous, without self-control, brutal, not loving good, treacherous, reckless, swollen with conceit, lovers of pleasure rather than lovers of God, having the appearance of godliness, but denying its power. Avoid such people.

Wow Timothy, brutal words my friend. I can’t say I was all of those things but it stings to read this verse and in hindsight realise, I was one of those people you should avoid. I have always had good in my heart but God was not at the top like He should have been. He was more like a pang in my heart that I kept shoving down.

Turning back to  God was terrifying for me at first. I was at a rather low point in my life but…

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It’s never God’s intention to punish us. We are His children and like any parent there comes a time when you have to let your children go out into the world and hope they will take with them all the lessons you have taught them. God has that same hope and he’s waiting for you despite all of your mistakes and shortcomings. You think this would be an easy concept to understand but it was difficult for me to accept.

When I started going back to church, I became painfully aware of my sins. It had nothing to do with people in the church judging me (a misconception I had about church). On the contrary, I was accepted with open arms…new territory for me. I had never had that kind of support before.

I spent the first few months of church crying nearly every Sunday. The whole experience was overwhelming. All the emotions I felt as I started to face myself for the first time, knowing I had brushed aside God’s love. My faith had been suppressed for so long. I felt shame and guilt but also an overwhelming release of negativity.

As time passes, my faith in God becomes stronger more and more each day. My church is beyond supportive of this relatively new journey. I don’t feel like I am walking alone anymore. There are people who are more than happy to walk with me and cheer me on. It makes me cry for a totally different reason now. Tears of joy for a change.

What a difference it makes when you let go of the people in your life that hinder your faith and in turn, surround yourself with people who are not ashamed to walk with God and actually want to walk with Him. It was a huge step for me to walk through the church doors knowing the last time I went to this church, I was a child.

Now that my faith in God and the support of my church is a constant in my life, there is simply no way I can turn back. I am hanging on for dear life and God is not about to let go of my hand…it reminds me of the first time I was able to swim in the deep end of the pool without having to cling to the edge. God is my swim coach. ❤

What I take away from this transformation is that God is willing to work with even the smallest inkling of His presence in your life. There are times I still have to give myself a shake and realize that no, I am not dreaming.

As you build on your faith, God starts throwing more and more blessings your way. Sometimes we think we have to pray for these blessings and yes, prayer is vital but God I have discovered, is a cool guy. He likes to throw out random blessings just because. Bonus blessings if you will.

That’s what God has done for me and my fiance recently. We’re getting married this summer. Sooner than we had originally planned for.

I thought planning this wedding was going to be stressful but the outpouring of support in my church has made me realise there are truly good people in this world who are ready, willing and able to help.

My fiance and I are not used to this and we don’t even expect it yet there it is right in front of our face and it’s been there the whole time. We just needed to get real with ourselves. Get real with God and be true to ourselves for a change instead of compromising with people who are so far removed from our core values and most of all our faith in God.

If I had one piece of advice for anyone out there on the fence about their faith, just know that God has left you a trail of mustard seeds to follow. These mustard seeds lead to a mountain and if you are willing to climb that mountain, God is waiting for you at the top. Sky’s the limit after that and when God returns, there is a place for you beyond your wildest dreams. ❤

Take Care & God Bless ❤

Cavelle

 

 

 

 

 

The Truth About Lying

liar

Hey guys 🙂

Today I want to discuss the art of lying. No, not so you can become a better liar but so you can spot one.

We have all told a white lie here and there…if you try to tell me you have never told a lie, the truth is, you’re lying.

It is human nature to fudge the truth a bit in order to spare someone’s feelings or avoid petty conflict but if you add up enough of these little lies it can quickly snowball  out of control.

But today, I am not talking about the little white lies we are all guilty of telling. I am talking about the compulsive, pathological liar.

Many of us are being lied to right now and don’t even have the first clue it is happening. This is because the brand of liar I am talking about is a seasoned veteran. In many cases, said liar actually believes their own lies and this my friends, is the most dangerous liar of all.

I am going to tell you what to look for so you can avoid being a victim to lies.

First, we have to address the core reason for lying and ask the question “why?” in order to understand said liar. There is one main reason to lie –

To avoid the consequences of truth. Simple enough right? But it goes much deeper than that.

Are you ready to go down this rabbit hole?…Ok, let’s begin!

Low Self Esteem: 

Most likely, the person in question is suffering from low self esteem. They are stuck in denial about what is actually happening (or not happening) in their lives and would rather lie to themselves and others to avoid confronting the real issue at hand, which in many cases is quite painful and brings shame. Who wants that?

When we think of low self esteem and what it looks like, many of us picture that person with the hunched shoulders, who stares at the ground with the quiet voice and cares little about their choice of attire but that isn’t who I’m talking about today…

The Narcissist:

A lot of us assume that the narcissist has deep rooted self esteem issues and toot their own horn to compensate for lack of self esteem but this is where things get a bit tricky.

You see, the narcissist may have deep rooted psychological issues at their core but they actually believe they are as good as they say they are.

The narcissist believes in the idealized version of themselves that they present to you. They have the answers to all of life’s questions and they are more than happy to share whether you asked or not. They come off as arrogant, nothing is their fault, and they feel they are superior in intelligence compared to you and most people.

The narcissist rarely follows through with agreements and obligations. They may at times even admit they are wrong but the truth is they are paying lip service in order to get you off their back. They don’t truly believe they are wrong so they take on the role of being the “bigger man” in order to make you believe they have emotional maturity and you are in fact the one lacking it.

Along with narcissistic behavior, we discover a plethora of personality traits that bring us deeper into the psyche of a liar.

According to Támara Hill, MS, LPC  from PsychCentral.com there are certain personality traits that make a person more likely to lie.

She lists 13 in fact-

Certain personality traits where pathological lying may occur include:

  1. Narcissism or self-centered behaviors and thought patterns
  2. Selfishness
  3. Abusive attitude
  4. Obsessive, controlling, and compulsive behaviors
  5. Impulsivity
  6. Aggressiveness
  7. Jealous behavior
  8. Manipulative behaviors
  9. Deceptiveness
  10. Socially awkward, uncomfortable, or isolated
  11. Low self-esteem
  12. Tempermentalness
  13. Anger

 

I highly recommend reading the rest of her article. It is an excellent, 6 minute read and jammed packed with valuable information you can use to protect yourself. I will share the link below:

6 Subtle Characteristics of The Pathological Liar

So who else are we dealing with besides the the narcissist?

The Sociopath:

First, I need to make it clear that the sociopath and psychopath are not one in the same. The main difference being, the psychopath has no conscious whereas a sociopath path does have a conscious (although weak) and knows that what they’re doing is wrong yet do it anyway.

Now that we have an idea of the personality traits we are dealing with, I can share with you some of the tells that give away a liar nearly every time.

You hear about micro expressions in particular but today I am going to bypass that because most of us just don’t have the time or desire to be that detailed…at least I don’t! So here are some plain as day signs to look for:

Deflection:

Pathological liars have mastered this art form. If you hit them with the truth be prepared to have them switch up the subject pretty quickly or make the conversation about you. They are good at lying on demand so to simply come to them with evidence of the truth will not phase them as much as you think. Remember, they like this game and are willing to play it for as long as it takes to win.

 Liars Stay Calm:

Almost too clam in fact. They want to be the one in control so they take careful, calm, manipulative jabs at you to stir up your emotions as a way to once again, deflect and make this about you.

Once they have you riled up they will say things like “you’re crazy!” This person will do anything to protect their lie, so they are more than willing to dish out low blows.

Do your best to fight fire with fire by staying just as calm, but know what you are up against because the liar does not quit…they can’t quit because they need to keep their story in check so they deflect to buy time to get their lie back in order…On that note, I recommend you read…

The Swiss Cheese Story:

The liar isn’t perfect and they are bound to fumble at some point. Pay close attention to what the liar is saying and compare it to past stories. Question the liar on this and you will see their mood change rather quickly. They go from being calm and smug to angry and annoyed…if you look really close you can see the steam coming out their ears as they angrily formulate more lies.

At first, the liar will have the answers to all of your questions and please note how quickly the answers spu out. Just like a boxer will let his opponent tire and then knock him out in one punch, you need to do the same with the liar.

Start connecting the dots and question the ones that don’t make any sense. Keep questioning and you will start to see the liar is running out of answers and once again deflection comes into play yet the liar will still not admit defeat…trust me…

Trust Me:

Liars overcompensate and exaggerate their version of the truth. The liar will over use phrases like “trust me” and “I swear” or they will start to question you…”What? You don’t believe me?”

Insult To Injury:

When the liar realizes you are not quite buying what they’re selling they will act insulted that you would question their oh so honest ways. Don’t be surprised if you hear the phrase “How dare you!”

Mixed Bag:

The reason a pathological liar is skilled at what they do is because they know how to mix a little bit of the truth into their lies in order to make the lie more believable. It’s always a smoke and mirrors show designed to keep you guessing and doubt yourself.

How do I defeat the liar?

Simple answer? You don’t but I will give you some simple advice that lets you know you are not in fact going crazy like the liar wants you to believe.

Less Is More:

Do not get into a war of words with the liar. Listen to the liar first and foremost as they will reveal something to you…their lie.

The liar will talk, and talk (especially the narcissist).

As they talk, they will add in all kinds of unnecessary details to answer your questions (which they cannot stand) so keep your lips zipped and your ears open. The more silence you provide the more the liar is put off and feels the need to fill in the gap.

Trust Your Gut:

You may not have all the pieces or concrete evidence but your gut is very sensitive to BS so always stay in tune with that gut feeling because it knows before you do most of the time.

In closing, do not beat yourself up if you do happen to let your emotions get the best of you or you discover you have in fact been taken on a ride of lies. What goes around comes around and even the Bible has some choice words for the liar…

Luke 8:17

For nothing is hidden that will not be made manifest, nor is anything secret that will not be known and come to light.

Take Care & God Bless ❤

Cavelle

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Recharge Your Spiritual Battery

 

battery-clipart-battery-recycling-clip-art

Hey guys 🙂

Today I have decided to take a more spiritual approach to a post I had written about burnout in the workplace. If you care to read that post I will link it here

Just like there is burnout in the workplace, I feel you can also experience burnout on a spiritual level. As a Christian, I try my best to keep my faith strong but it’s not always that easy when you are faced with the struggles of everyday life.

If you have been keeping up with my blog, you know that I live with Bipolar Disorder and not only do I advocate for God but I advocate for mental illness.

Mental illness does not come without it’s challenges and in my case, when you are in the throes of  depression or mania (sometimes both, called a mixed episode) your mental state becomes skewed and leaves you vulnerable. It makes it difficult during those times to reach out to God and ask for His help.

I want share some ideas that I feel will help keep your faith and overall well being strong. Whether you live with a mental illness or not we are all vulnerable to the chaos that exists in this world. It is imperative that we protect ourselves from it. ❤

Pray And Practice Gratitude:

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I know. This seems obvious but many of us will only pray when things get messy. What about when things are going well? We should always acknowledge God in prayer good or bad. Prayer during the good times shows gratitude and practicing gratitude on a daily basis is scientifically proven to improve psychological and physical health. For more information on that I will link you to an article I found –

7 Scientifically Proven Benefits of Gratitude 

Even if you don’t believe in God, practicing gratitude will strengthen your overall well being and if you live with a mental illness, this is especially important.

For those of you who do practice your faith in God a simple verse from Psalms is a wonderful way to start your day –

Psalm 118:24

This is the day that the Lord has made; let us rejoice and be glad in it.

I also turn you to Proverbs (my favourite book ) –

Proverbs 3:6

In all your ways acknowledge him, and he will make straight your paths.

Prayer and gratitude is not only valuable but very powerful. Make a point to include it in your life daily. ❤

If you are in need of prayer or someone you know needs prayers I will link you to my Prayer Requests post. I would be more than happy to pray for you and with you. ❤

 

Keep Your Inner Circle Close:

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If you have God in your life, He is the center of that circle. Never let it stray from there. In general, nurture the people closest to you. If you are living with mental illness I know this can be tough to ask of you but it is important that you do not shut out the people who truly love and care for you. We all need love and acceptance. We all need a hug and someone to tell us “Things will be Ok” but it takes two for this equation to work. Make sure to put your best foot forward to reciprocate that love and acceptance.

Before I found God in my life, I was surrounded by the wrong people. I allowed them to drain me on many levels. When I accepted God into my life and made a point to move closer to my family, I purged a lot of negativity and people out of my life. I have started to keep my life as simple as possible as a result and I must say…it’s the best thing I have ever done for myself.

I am rather selective now of who I allow into my inner circle. In the past, I was a welcome mat for all kinds of negative, toxic influences which leads me into my next tip –

Create And Stick To Your Boundaries: 

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For me, it started with God. I make it a point to not let people get in the way of my faith anymore. My faith in God brings me peace and I refuse to let anyone mess with that.

As a rule, if it doesn’t feel right, if you have that nagging feeling in the pit of your stomach, if you feel something does not line up with your morals and values…stay the heck away from it. Do not let people walk all over you and bring you down to their level of negativity. You are worth more than that and saying no does not make you a bad person. It means you respect yourself enough to know what your limits are.

Creating boundaries will either make people respect you or send the ones who have a problem with it running for the hills…good… If someone has a problem with you respecting yourself then they don’t need to be in your life. Period.

Galatians 6:5

For each will have to bear his own load.

I hope some of my ideas help you to stay on a straight path. These are just a few of the ways you can protect your well being and your faith. I feel the three I have listed are the core values you should try and hang on to most. If you do that, the rest will follow.

In closing, I invite you to share any experiences  you have had that has improved your life and has helped to keep your path straight. Sharing with others is another great way to rejuvenate your spiritual and mental well being. Let’s help each other recharge those spiritual batteries! ❤

 

Take Care & God Bless ❤

Cavelle

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Prayer Requests

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Hey guys 🙂

I was giving it some thought and I can’t believe I didn’t think of this sooner. We offer it all the time in my church. Prayer requests.

Many times we forget that there is not only power in prayer but in numbers. Today I want to extend my blog to anyone who may need prayer today. ❤

I want to offer up my sincere prayers to you. Please feel free to contact me via my contact page and I will send you prayer personalized to your needs. ❤

Matthew 18:20

For where two or three are gathered in my name, there am I among them.”

I encourage you to share requests in the comments section as well so that others can pray for you and with you.

If you feel other people need prayer, please feel free to reblog this post. Let’s form a prayer chain today and come together knowing God is watching over us.

God hears our prayers and He’s ready to answer them. ❤

Take Care & God Bless ❤

Cavelle

Let Live and Let God

Hey guys 🙂

Sorry it’s been a few days since my last post but I needed to recharge my writing batteries. I am sure my fellow writers can relate! 🙂

Today I want to talk about something we are all faced with at some point. Letting go.

There are many things we are faced with in life that prompt the question  “Should I stay or should I go.” (great song by the way)

In the past, letting go was something I seriously struggled with. It never really crossed my mind to turn to God during these times and allow Him to take over. Sometimes, in order for God to work through us we have to be willing to step aside and let Him do his work.

Philippians 4:6

Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God.

Letting go can be frightening. Even if we know that deep down we need to walk away, many of us will hang on to bad relationships, jobs, influences etc. for we drown ourselves  in fear of the unknown. But God knows. He is leaps and bounds ahead of us and He knows what he wants for us even if we can’t see it at the time.

If we are not willing to jump, how is God supposed to catch us?

let your faith

Even if we stray from God, He manages to whisper to our soul the wishes He has for us. It manifests into that gut feeling we get when we know something needs to change for the better. He’s always there.

Always. ❤

When we feel pain and despair. When we feel stuck, when we cry at night thinking no one is watching, God cries with us. He wishes not to hurt us only to lift us up.

Let Him. ❤

It’s been my personal experience that the hardest thing to do is walk away from the people we love. Especially if we are worried for their wellbeing. We ask –

“If I walk away from this person, who will take care of them?”

God will.

It has also been my experience that when you face your fear of letting go and take the plunge, it’s never as bad as you think it’s going to be. On the contrary, it is in fact one of the most liberating things you can do! Once we free ourself from the chains of fear, God rewards us! It makes Him so happy that you put your faith in Him and in turn he blesses you with His love, joy and comfort.

If life were easy, there would be no need for faith. God puts our faith to the test not to punish us but to draw us closer and closer to Him so that He can protect us from the evil that roams this earth. Being true to God means you have to be true to yourself. We are a reflection of God’s image.

2 Corinthians 5:17

Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation. The old has passed away; behold, the new has come.

In closing, know that you are not alone. There may be dark clouds in the sky but when you rise above those clouds, you see the sun is shining bright! Allow yourself to place your burdens on God. He can handle it. He is God after all. You are a reflection of God and by loving yourself enough to let go, you love God.

We are His children and He is the Father. ❤

God

Take Care & God Bless ❤

Cavelle

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Are You Burning Out? Six Things You Need To Know

Stress
Does this look familiar?

 

Hey guys!

Today, I want to start off by saying it does not matter if you have an existing mental illness or not. We are all at risk for burnout.

 

Burnout:

Physical or mental collapse caused by overwork or stress.

 

Are you burning out?

In Canada, billions of dollars (yes, billions) are spent related to mental health problems in the workplace. This accounts for over 75% of short term disability claims.

It’s an epidemic.

I have fell victim to burnout before. In hindsight, I feel I could have prevented it had I paid more attention to the signs. I would like to go over some of the signs today in the hopes that if you’re reading this, you can catch and prevent burnout before it’s too late.

 

1. Sleep Disturbances:

I place a lot of importance on this one. Proper sleep is crucial for our mental and physical wellbeing. Sure, we all have a night here and there when a full eight hours just doesn’t happen but definitely keep an eye out for insomnia and on the other end of the spectrum, chronic fatigue.

Neither one is healthy and if ignored in the early stages, it can become a vicious cycle that becomes very difficult to break out of. When your brain won’t shut off or refuses to turn on, this is the first sign something is not right. Do not ignore this!

2. Lack of Concentration and Forgetfulness:

Once your sleep patterns are off you will start to notice you just can’t seem to focus at work anymore. Simple tasks become daunting and that is if you are lucky enough to remember those tasks in the first place. This too becomes a vicious cycle. You may notice your boss is on your case more..

“Why isn’t this done already?…We talked about this yesterday…remember?”

You start to miss deadlines, memos, lunch and breaks because you are trying to make up for your lack of organization which in turn, just adds more stress to the existing problem…

3. Loss of Appetite:

Since you have been missing lunch and breaks trying to catch up on your work, your appetite starts to go off the rails. You may find you don’t have an appetite at all anymore or you may find yourself going without food most of your shift only to come home and eat one giant meal…and since you can’t sleep, you might as well turn on Netflix and eat that bag of chips and drink a gallon of pop…

4. Anxiety and Depression:

As you continue down this rabbit hole, it is not long before you find yourself on edge about your work. Not only are you having trouble getting out of bed in the morning but you are seriously not looking forward to your day anymore.

At this point, you have most likely spent sleepless nights stressing over what has to get done the next day. It makes it harder and harder to walk through those doors no matter how many cups of coffee you drink.

Coworkers who used to brighten your day just don’t cut it anymore. You look around and see everyone going about their workday with relative ease. You start to feel isolated because you feel you are the only one who is not able to keep up with the pack.

5. Physical Symptoms and Increased Illness:

Your brain rules the body and when your brain is not happy, the rest of your body will follow suit. You may notice chest pain, stomach troubles, headaches, tense muscles etc. This takes a toll on your immune system making you more susceptible to illness. You find yourself going from perfect attendance to using up those sick days at a rapid rate.

6. Anger: 

You have now gone from being a ray of sunshine at work to a dark cloud of cynicism. You’re snappy, detached, resentful, and ultimately start to not give a flying (you know what) about whether or not you return that email or finish that project on time.

After all, you’ve been coming into work early and leaving late to make up for the fact you cannot complete your work during your regular shift. You’re working overtime (and most likely not getting paid for it). In your mind, you have done more than anyone else at work and you start to resent your boss and your coworkers because none of them seem to be appreciating the extra effort.

Nobody else cares so why should you?

Once you have reached the anger stage, consider yourself done. It will officially not get any better from here on in unless you take action. Your boss and coworkers at this point would rather avoid you as your state of mind is now considered to be a liability to the rest of the team which only fuels your resentment.

Although it may not feel like it, you do have some options here. I highly recommend taking stress leave. If that is off the table for you than consider switching to a different department and then there is the option no one likes to admit, leave your job.

I know what you’re thinking right now…

“I can’t do that! How will I pay my bills? How will I… (insert one of your many excuses not to save your mental and physical health here.)

The thing is, if you do not acknowledge this for what it is and continue down this path of destruction, pretty soon you will not have a choice. You will either be fired or in the emergency room suffering from a full blown nervous breakdown.

That’s the reality should you choose to ignore all of this. It will not be a matter of if but when.

On top of that, it’s not just in the workplace, your home life will suffer miserably. The people who truly matter will be pushed away.

If you have a partner or spouse, I can assure you this will lead to arguments and fights. It can even lead to more serious complications like divorce. If you have children especially, why risk their well being because you are refusing to take care of your own?

Is it really worth it?

I sincerely hope that if you are reading this and relate to even one of the signs I have listed, take action before it is too late. Talk to your doctor, talk to HR and perhaps give yourself a talking to.

Your mental wellbeing is worth taking care of! Not just for yourself but for those you love. If you put yourself on the backburner you will burnout.

Take Care & God Bless ❤

Cavelle