There Is No Such Thing as…

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Posted by Jill Whalen | Posted in Psychology, Spirituality, Things I've Learned | Posted on 23-05-2020

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There is no such thing as “The Capitalist” Or “The Progressives,” or “The Liberals,” or “The Muslims,” or “The Jews,” or “The Homeless,” or “The Non-Dualists,” or “The 3 Principles Community,” or “The Republicans,” or “The Democrats,” or “The Rich,” or “The Poor,” or “The Atheists,” or “The Anti-Vaxxers” or “The Trumpists.” Or any other label we can dream up or imagine.

There is no such thing as groups.

There are only images in our mind of what those labels mean.

We need labels in order to make sense of, and communicate within this world. However, they also create separation and divisiveness. We love those we feel part of, and hate those that seem in opposition. Yet if we take one individual from any group, it’s guaranteed they will have differing opinions from other members of the group. Which is also why there is often divisiveness within the groups themselves.

All Labels Are Stereotypes.

They are convenient shortcuts to help us be concise in our language. However, those shortcuts come with a price. When we use labels in everyday conversation, it suggests that there is some sort of solid entity that has a very specific set of beliefs, and dogma. The label itself, makes it “a thing” in and of itself. And yet, the “thing” doesn’t exist beyond our very own (unique) idea of what it means to be “that thing.”

What’s Really Happening?

Unfortunately, the vocal minority of most groups, is where we get our stereotypes. Or worse, the ones that say the most provocative things. They are often the most extreme members of those groups. Yet when those extreme views clash with ours, our categorizing brain likes to attribute them to the entire group.

For instance, some may think of Capitalists as “those people who want others to be poor because they are selfish and want all the money for themselves.”

Or some might think of Muslims as “those people who blow up buildings.”

Or perhaps some think of Liberals as “those people who want everything to be free in life, without realizing that the money has to come from somewhere.” And while there may be some members that have those beliefs and intentions, those views never describe the group as a whole.

Most groups are made up of well-intentioned people who want the best for the world and themselves.

So What Can We Do to Fix This Misunderstanding?

First, it’s very important to open up our own minds even just a tiny bit to consider what I’ve said above. That what we think of as a group, might in reality be the vocal minority within that group. If/when we do that, it can loosen up the image we have in our mind of that group.

Next, if we want to have a discussion about current events, or politics, or religion, or whatever else, rather than calling out an entire group of people as being bad, or wrong based on the words and deeds of a some, simply call out those specific people. In other words, if we don’t like people who blow up buildings (and who really does?) then talk about them specifically, rather than as a group.

For instance, there’s nothing wrong in saying “Those people who blow up buildings, shouldn’t be allowed in our country.” Why do we need to label them as part of a larger group where the majority wants nothing to do with such acts of violence?

And if we don’t like the idea of there being selfish people who want others to be poor so they can have all the money for themselves (and again…who really does?) then use that whole phrase, rather than a shortcut label. While it’s easier to substitute the one word “Capitalist,” it only describes some individuals within the larger group of Capitalists.

And if we don’t like the idea of people wanting to live off handouts without working for a living while we have to earn our money, then say that. There’s no need to place all Liberals under that umbrella.

In summary…

All groups are made up of unique individuals who have many varied points of view. Some we may agree with, others we may not. If we were to speak one-on-one with any individual member, I am certain we would find many areas of agreement and overlap of views. We would also realize that no group in and of itself is “all bad.”

It’s all in how we imagine them to be.

I welcome your thoughts.

Why is it so Difficult to Agree to Disagree?

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Posted by Jill Whalen | Posted in Miscellaneous, Psychology, Relationships, Thought | Posted on 08-08-2018

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[Jill’s Note: If you prefer to listen rather than read, please scroll to the bottom of this post for the audio version. There’s also a “Victim of Thought Show which is on this subject which you can view here or at the end of this post.]

We all know and use the phrase, “Let’s agree to disagree.”

Why is it so hard to agree to disagree?

It gets pulled out when we’re getting nowhere in an argument or discussion. From our point of view, the other person is simply not listening well, or isn’t very intelligent, or just doesn’t get the facts of the situation. Because obviously if they did, they would agree with us! So rather than cause a scene or escalate the situation, we agree to disagree.

Or at least we say we do.

But inside, we know we are right!

Read the rest of this entry »

One Truth: We Live in the Feeling of Thought in the Moment

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Posted by Jill Whalen | Posted in Psychology, Things I've Learned, Thought | Posted on 13-06-2018

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[Jill’s Note: If you prefer to listen rather than read, please scroll to the bottom of this post for the audio version. There’s also a corresponding video.]

Flat Earth?If you’ve read any of my blog posts, you know I write about how it’s our thoughts that create our entire experience of life. In other words, as much as it appears that other people and situations cause us to feel how we feel–they don’t. The way we feel in any given moment is always and only a factor of whatever thoughts happen to pop in our heads at that time.

You don’t have to believe me, but…

This is the “One Truth” of how the world works.

Read the rest of this entry »

All The World’s a Stage

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Posted by Jill Whalen | Posted in Miscellaneous, Spiritual Teachings, Spirituality, Thought | Posted on 28-02-2018

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[Jill’s Note: If you prefer to listen rather than read, please scroll to the bottom of this post for the audio version.]

Shakespeare once said, “All the world’s a stage.” While he was talking about the various stages of life we go through, the short tale you are about to read is in reference to the kind of stage in which plays play out… 

Once upon a time in a faraway land, there existed only a stage.

All the world's a stage!It wasn’t your everyday stage. It was a grande, regal, magical one. What made it so special was that the entire universe consisted solely of this omnipresent stage.

The stage had no name, nor did it need one because there was nothing else but it. However, in the universe in which this story is told, labels are useful, so we’ll call it “Mo.” The stage also had no specific gender, but again, for purposes of this story, we’ll use “he” and “him” when referring to Mo. But in reality, he was more of an “it” than a “he.”

Mo’s magicalness meant that he continuously created an infinite supply of scenery, props, costumes and actors to perform within the stage that was him. This provided an endless variety of shows playing out for his enjoyment, amusement and entertainment. Read the rest of this entry »

Looking Back at the Magical Unfolding of Life

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Posted by Jill Whalen | Posted in Business, Spirituality, Thought | Posted on 11-10-2017

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[Jill’s Note: If you prefer to listen rather than read, please scroll to the bottom of this post for the audio version.]

Life UnfoldingIt’s been nearly four years since I announced to the industry I loved for 17 years (Search Engine Optimization aka SEO), that I was moving on.

In my parting message, the piece that stands out to me now is this:

“SEO was never about the money for me. It was my passion and something that I absolutely had to do. And because of that, the money came. I believe the same thing can be true for anyone who finds their passion and uses it to help others.”

Which is exactly what I’ve been doing these past 4 years.

I’ve found a new passion and am using it to help others.

Here’s the coolest part… Read the rest of this entry »

5 Reasons Why Being ‘Up in Arms’ is Dumb

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Posted by Jill Whalen | Posted in Business, Psychology, Relationships, Spirituality, Thought | Posted on 10-09-2017

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[Jill’s Note: If you prefer to listen rather than read, please scroll to the bottom of this post for the audio version.]

Have you ever noticed how certain people are always up in arms about something?

Are You Always Up in Arms?Whether it’s a situation at work, home or in our social circles, we can easily find a reason to feel put upon. As soon as one problem is cleared up, there’s always another around the corner. Plus there are plenty of horrible happenings in the news to feel bad about just in case we can’t find anything to complain about locally!

No doubt, there are a zillion things we can be up in arms over. But why would we want to? It seems kinda dumb to me. Read the rest of this entry »

How to Shine Your Light Towards Effortless Success

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Posted by Jill Whalen | Posted in Business | Posted on 14-12-2016

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[Jill’s Note: If you prefer to listen rather than read, please scroll to the bottom of this post for the audio version.]

How much of what you do is because you’ve seen others do it first?

Shine Your LightI recently saw a Facebook post from someone running an online program wondering what she might use as a bonus incentive to register. My initial reaction (which I posted to her) was something like: “Why do you need a bonus incentive? Shouldn’t your program’s content itself be the incentive to sign up?” She replied that she did believe her content was valuable enough, but that everyone else always has bonuses so she felt she needed to as well.

I found her answer to be curious.

Read the rest of this entry »

Why I’m Learning to Keep My Mouth Shut (and You Should Too!)

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Posted by Jill Whalen | Posted in Relationships, Things I've Learned, Thought | Posted on 24-08-2016

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Keep Your Mouth Shut![Jill’s Note: If you prefer to listen rather than read, please scroll to the bottom of this post for the audio version.]

You know the old saying “Mind your own business”? More and more I believe this is the key to a happy life. Heck, it probably should be the slogan for all of humanity!

While I don’t talk a whole lot and try to mind my own business, I can’t tell you how many times a day I say “Just keep your mouth shut”to myself!

It wasn’t always this way. Read the rest of this entry »

Are You Acting Like You’re Still in High School?

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Posted by Jill Whalen | Posted in Business, Psychology, Relationships, Spirituality, Thought | Posted on 01-08-2016

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Still In High School[Jill’s Note: If you prefer to listen rather than read, please scroll to the bottom of this post for the audio version.]

I enjoy games as much as the next guy. Especially challenging and fun ones. For instance, this game of life we’re all playing. But some of the “games within the game” that I see all around me seem so unnecessary, and in many ways–hurtful.

Sometimes it even feels like I’m back in high school. Read the rest of this entry »

My 3 Year Anniversary of Taking Back My Life

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Posted by Jill Whalen | Posted in Healthy Activities, Healthy Eating, Things I've Learned, Thought | Posted on 04-05-2016

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[Jill’s Note: If you prefer to listen rather than read, please scroll to the bottom of this post for the audio version.]

Yay Me!This past Sunday (May 1, 2016) marked 3 years since I began my transformational journey. What started as a simple decision to lose weight, has culminated in a whole new me–both physically and mentally.

Here’s a recap: Read the rest of this entry »

You Have No Competition Because They Are Not You

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Posted by Jill Whalen | Posted in Business, Spiritual Teachings | Posted on 01-02-2016

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If you prefer to listen rather than read, please scroll to the bottom of this post for the audio version.

[Jill’s Note: I wrote a version of this post in a Facebook Group for budding coaches last summer and was reminded of it yesterday as I was listening to the classic Og Mandino’s “The World’s Greatest Salesman – Scroll #4.” Apparently my last blog post on approaching people with love instead of judgment reminded my sister of Scroll #2 in that book which is why I was listening to it in the first place. Great minds think alike as I could relate to much of what Mandino says as it relates to business. He’s a little more “Go get ’em tiger” than I ever was, but his overall message was very similar to how I ran my business for over 18 years. Mandino’s Scroll #4 starts out:

“I am nature’s greatest miracle. Since the beginning of time, never has there been another with my mind, my heart, my eyes, my hands, my hair, my mouth. None that came before, none that live today, and none that come tomorrow can walk and talk and move and think exactly like me.”

To me, this notion has always been the key to business success as you’ll see from my post below written long before I ever heard of Og Mandino! – Jill ] Read the rest of this entry »

Labeling and Judging: Why Do We Label Others?

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Posted by Jill Whalen | Posted in Spirituality, Things I've Learned, Thought | Posted on 26-01-2016

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[Jill’s Note: If you prefer to listen rather than read, please scroll to the bottom of this post for the audio version.]

Being JudgedNow that I’m often observing my thoughts, I’ve noticed some that surprise me.  For instance, I never thought of myself as judgmental, yet some of my thoughts tell me otherwise. Read the rest of this entry »

My Mentors and What I’ve Been Reading and Watching

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Posted by Jill Whalen | Posted in Miscellaneous, Spiritual Teachings, Spirituality | Posted on 13-01-2016

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[Jill’s Note: If you prefer to listen rather than read, please scroll to the bottom of this post for the audio version.]

Some of you may have wondered where I come up with all the [crazy] [profound] [interesting] [spiritual] [odd] blog posts that I write. (Choose whichever word best describes how you feel about them!) They come from my own experiences as well as conversations I have with others. However, I also spend a lot of time watching, listening and reading various philosophies which impact what I write. Read the rest of this entry »

Be a Leader Not a Follower: The Secret to Everything

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Posted by Jill Whalen | Posted in Business, Things I've Learned, Thought | Posted on 05-11-2015

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[Jill’s Note: If you prefer to listen rather than read, please scroll to the bottom of this post for the audio version.]

Be The LeaderHave you looked at leaders in your space or community, and wondered how they got there?

There could be millions of different ways, but I am 100% certain that it wasn’t by being a follower.

It seems that in our world, there are followers and there are leaders. While there can be some cross-over, for the most part we are one or the other.

It doesn’t have to be that way. Read the rest of this entry »

How to Gain Higher Levels of Consciousness

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Posted by Jill Whalen | Posted in Spiritual Teachings, Things I've Learned, Thought | Posted on 02-11-2015

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[Jill’s Note: If you prefer to listen rather than read, please scroll to the bottom of this post for the audio version.]

Higher Levels!If you’re into personal development and/or spiritual stuff, you may have noticed how you can read, listen or watch the same thing multiple times and hear something different.

It depends upon your mindset at the time. Read the rest of this entry »

Being the Observer of Your Thoughts

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Posted by Jill Whalen | Posted in Spiritual Teachings, Spirituality, Things I've Learned, Thought | Posted on 16-10-2015

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[Jill’s Note: If you prefer to listen rather than read, please scroll to the bottom of this post for the audio version.]

Observing Our LifeMost of us live our lives without ever noticing our thoughts. When we don’t know what’s going on in our heads, most of the time we act unconsciously. We allow our reactive habits and behaviors to take over, and become like robots going through our programmed ways of dealing with life.

Which is a recipe for disaster. Read the rest of this entry »

Changing From Shy to Outgoing

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Posted by Jill Whalen | Posted in Business, Things I've Learned, Thought | Posted on 24-09-2015

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[Jill’s Note: If you prefer to listen rather than read, please scroll to the bottom of this post for the audio version.]

Can Shyness Be Changed?

Is it possible to change shyness?

This past May, while attending the Innate Wellbeing Retreat in the UK, I had an epiphany about shyness–my own and that of being shy, in general.

As I was watching how people interacted, I noticed a few different personality types: Read the rest of this entry »

3 Midlife Crisis Cliches Women Often Face

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Posted by Jill Whalen | Posted in Healthy Activities, Healthy Eating, Spirituality, Things I've Learned, Thought, Yoga | Posted on 11-06-2015

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[Jill’s Note: If you prefer to listen rather than read, please scroll to the bottom of this post for the audio version.]

Midlife Crisis?Okay. I admit it. I’m somewhere within the second half of my life. Does this mean my life transformation has been part of a “Midlife Crisis”? I shudder at the thought. No crisis here! But I can see how the deep inner desire for change I experienced could be unsettling for some.

It’s clear that women in their 50’s seem to have some innate desire for change.  Some do nothing (but complain) when those desires hit, others go hog wild and completely uproot their lives. Others, pursue their desires in a way that is positive and helpful. I like to think I’m in the latter group.

Midlife crises are often depicted in popular culture in a cliched manner. Career changes, leaving a spouse and taking up yoga seem to be some of the more popular cliches. Let’s examine these and see how valid they are.  Read the rest of this entry »

Living Life With Less Anxiety and Fear

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Posted by Jill Whalen | Posted in Psychology, Relationships, Spirituality, Things I've Learned, Thought | Posted on 03-06-2015

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[Jill’s Note: If you prefer to listen rather than read, please scroll to the bottom of this post for the audio version. You may also want to watch the video where I answer some questions about anxiety.]

Disclaimer: Anyone who’s followed me for any length of time knows I’d be the first to tell you that if you see a claim on a blog that says something like “be free from anxiety without doing anything!” you should leave that blog and never come back. Which is super ironic in that’s exactly what I’m about to tell you in this blog post. However, if you bear with me, I promise that what I’ve learned and seen work in my own life is not akin to some fake “overnight success” story where if you just send me all your money I’ll tell you the secret! Not in the least. First of all, I don’t want your money. Second of all, the “secret” if you will, is actually just common sense. But you know how common sense is–not common unless you actually know it. Sadly, most of us have grown up being taught the exact opposite of what I’m about to tell you.

Sooooo…if you haven’t been scared off yet and you trust me to deliver on the goods, then the worst that will happen is you’ll think I’m a quack and move on. The BEST is you’ll hear something that just might possibly change your life.

Intrigued? Then please continue… Read the rest of this entry »

Do Small Businesses Need to Do Content Marketing?

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Posted by Jill Whalen | Posted in Business | Posted on 01-04-2015

Helping Heart Centered BusinessesIn my current online circles, I’ve been running into a lot of small, heart-centered business owners who are confused about how to market their offerings online. While I left my old SEO world in 2013 in part because I felt that most people finally knew all of the marketing wisdom I had to share, I now see that I was wrong. Yes, true professionals in the SEO space got it. And yes, many of the companies I had been working with who’d been marketing online for many years also got it. But it never occurred to me that there were still so many smaller and/or newer businesses coming online every day who had no clue. And sadly, there is still a lot of bad and outright wrong information everywhere.

So once again, I find myself drawn to helping them. (Who knew you can’t erase 18+ years of website marketing knowledge!) Read the rest of this entry »