attitude of gratitude

Book Review: Idiot, by Laura Clery

Don’t Be an Idiot, READ Idiot.

So, this isn’t a typical review for a witchcraft blog, but I just loved this book too much not to review it. I love Laura Clery, I’m a huge fan of her videos. I wasn’t going to get her book, because I’m not into self-help books. But this is like a self-help-memoir-letter that sucks you in and spits you out feeling like your soul has been to the dry cleaners, you’re all clean and fresh and crisp.


My Star Rating for Idiot:

Is Laura Clery an Idiot?

She certainly used to be! But, who isn’t when they’re spending everyday on drugs? And before you get all mad at me for being insensitive: I am an addict, so I know how idiotic people can be when they’re high. I’ve been clean for about five years now. I did not go through AA or anything, because the program didn’t work for me. But it worked for Laura, and works for many, many people everyday. So before I move any further, if you are an addict and need help, I encourage you to seek out your local AA. You can’t know if it will work unless you try it.

So, is Laura Clery an idiot? No. Not anymore. She was, and this was an amazing retelling of her life. I have to say that you can tell Laura isn’t a writer. The chapters are too long, and she tends to hop around a bit. She’s not a bad writer, but as a writer, I can tell she isn’t one. That’s okay though. Her authenticity and raw voice makes up for it. The content makes up for the poor construction. So, bandaid has been ripped off, and I can move onto the good stuff. I’m a huge fan of Laura Clery, so it pains me to criticize her like that, but I must remain authentic and be honest with you guys.

id·i·ot
/ˈidēət/
a stupid person.
a person of low intelligence.

Google Search

Laura Clery has proven that she was not stupid, she just made poor choices. Wit is a sign of intelligence- I don’t know who said that, but my father once told me that and since he’s really intelligent, I stick to it. Ipso facto, Laura Clery is not a stupid person. She was a troubled person. She was a lost soul. This story takes you through her life, from her happy, albeit weird, childhood, to her first experiences with drugs, and to her rock bottom. I thought my rock bottom was low, living in a tent in the woods, but that was nothing compared to being chased out of a house by your boyfriend’s girlfriend leaving you in the middle of LA with no friends, no family, and no place to go. So, yea, she’s had it hard. But equally drastic a difference between us, she is now living in Beverly Hills making a shit load of money. It balances out, right?

Why Idiot?

This book is not for idiots, because I fear they will misinterpret the message Laura is trying to communicate. I think this book is for the following:

  • addicts
  • anyone who is troubled spiritually, emotionally, etc.
  • victims of abuse, as well as survivors/thrivors of abuse
  • anyone who doesn’t know what to do with their life
  • anyone who knows what they want, but doesn’t know how to get there
  • anyone who wants to know Laura Clery’s life story

This book is for us Witches, too!

I found so many parallels in Laura’s story, so I can’t help but feel a connection to this book (hence why I’m reviewing a non-occult book on my blog). The thing is, the answer to her incredible life is mystical, and therefore it does fit on my blog! So this book is also for witches, pagans, and every other person that ascribes to the Law of Attraction, and lives by the power of Gratitude.

Laura Clery’s Magical Life

She spent a huge part of her life partying, drinking, drugging. She struggled to stay sober. She almost lost her husband because he relapsed and tried to detox off of benzo’s cold turkey (>>>btw that’s lethal. If you are addicted to valium, Xanax, or any other benzodiazepines, please don’t quit cold turkey. Get yourself to a rehab facility to chemically detox so you don’t die<<<).
All in all, she has been through the ringer. So what got her to her house in the Hills? The Law of Attraction. Yes! score one for witches baby! She specifically states in her book “I don’t think this is magic”. Well, Laura, hate to break it to you, but if you’re visualizing what you want and expressing gratitude as if you’ve already achieved it, that’s magic. That’s the law of Attraction, a law upon which magic works. So yea, her life is literally magical.

I mean, if getting paid to sing about your VAGANA isn’t magical, I don’t know what is.

Another reason I think Laura Clery’s book review is fitting for my blog is because she empowers the witch’s idea of a woman. She’s all about female empowerment, without being feminist, she’s a vegan, and she knows and acknowledges the power of the mind. So, yea, ’nuff said.


Peeing in Public, Shitting in a Hot Tub.

This section is actually going to be an assortment of my favorite quotes, but I wanted to make this a headline and couldn’t figure out a better place for it. I do want to say that I have the audiobook, and while I’m certain of the words, because I listened to the clips multiple times to make sure I noted them down right, I might get punctuation wrong. It’s setting off my OCD anxiety not knowing if it’s exact, so the least I can do is let you guys know I did my best lol. And, yes, she claims she pissed in public. She didn’t actually shit in the hot tub- her friend did, then handed her the turd. So Laura held a turd, and threw a turd, in a hot tub. Like I said, she was a fucking weird kid. Makes me love her all the more lol. #nocontextforyou #buythebook #justdidthat


…we are constantly in a state of either love or fear, and these states control the choices we make and the way we live…


…you’re an artist. You make art. Stay in the action and out of the results.


It sounds really cheesy, but those affirmations are what lifted me over the edge. I swear by them. I had such a rigid self image before, and the only things that could break the cycle of self hate were intentional, affirming, statements. I have been depressed, anxious, and suicidal for much of my life, and this is what has turned it around for me.


The only thing I can recommend is to visualize. For the record, I’m not saying this is magic, I’m saying that a shift in your focus from what you don’t want to what you do want is more powerful than we can ever imagine, and it works in mysterious ways.


Buy Laura Clery’s new book Idiot!

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Magical Gratitude 28-Day Challenge: Day 28, a little late

Greetings my Gracious Group of Grateful Gals, Guys, and everyone in-between! I must apologize, I hadn’t realized that my scheduled post never published! But, as they say, better late than never!

Remember the Magic

That’s the thing with magic. You’ve got to know it’s still here, all around us, or it just stays invisible for you.

Charles De Lint 
The Magic, pg. 235
Today we will start off by remembering yesterday. Rhonda Byrne explains that remembering the magic is one of the most powerful practices of gratitude because every day is unique, so each time you count yesterday’s blessings they will be different. 
Start todays’ practice by asking: What are the good things that happened yesterday? Did you receive good news? Did you magically acheive one of your desires? Did you feel especially happy? 
Remember the magic and list yesterday’s blessings on your Thank you list. Read over your list, feel the gratitude, and say THANK YOU THANK YOU THANK YOU for each item. 

Remember The Magic – it was created for YOU!

The Magic, p.237

Magical Gratitude 28-Day Challenge: Day 24

People who wait for a magic wand fail to see that they ARE the magic wand

-Thomas Leonard 

Energy flows where attention goes…

We won’t be using actual magic wands today, but we will BE the magic wands, directing energy to three people who are in need of love, health, wealth, or happiness. When you decide who you will help, find 3 photos of them (actual photographs, not pics on your phone or computer because you need to hold the photos in your hand.) If you don’t have photos of them, you could write their name down on a piece of paper, or even hold something of theirs. 

Take the photo of the first person, close your eyes and for one minute visualize that you are getting the news that that person achieved/received/recovered/fill-in-the-blank what they needed. How did you learn about your friend/family’s magical miracle? Did they tell you? or did their child blurt it out when they were leading up to it for a dramatic reveal? The clearer you see it the more magic you send them. When the minute is up open your eyes, look at the photo and say “THANK YOU…THANK YOU…THANK YOU…for _______ health, wealth or happiness.”
Say the words slowly and with intention. Now move on to the next person and repeat.

Using gratitude to help someone else with his/her/their health, wealth, and happiness is the single greatest act of gratitude you can perform. And one of the magical things about it is that the health, wealth, and happiness you fervently wish for others, you also bring to yourself.

Byrne, p. 210

Don’t  Forget…

Be sure to start your day with gratitude by adding 10 more items to your Thank you list. Take a look at your magical check, read through your list of desires, or take some magical steps to get you through the part of the day that seems to drag, and before going to bed tonight hold your magic rock tight, think about your day, and say thank you for the best part of the day.  

Magical Gratitude 28-Day Challenge: Day 23

In the comments below, tell me where you are and what the weather is like – more specifically, describe the air. I live in New Hampshire which is in the North-East United States. The air is cold, and crisp. It tastes and smells fresh, like an ice cold glass of water. It’s refreshing as well, like mint gum bursting with flavor, ensnaring all of your senses as you make the first few bites.

In ancient teachings it is said that when a person reaches the point of being deeply grateful for the air that they breathe, their gratitude will have reached a new level of power, and they will have become the true alchemist, who can effortlessly turn every part of their life into gold!

                                                                                                                                             Byrne, p. 204

Did it happen by chance?

Are you grateful for the air you breath? When I posed the question to myself, my knee-jerk reaction was “yes, of course”. But then I thought about it for a moment, and realized I wasn’t deeply grateful, as I have never thought of the miraculousness of having air on this planet. Byrne explains that “It’s not an accident that there’s a protective atmosphere surrounding us, and that beyond it there’s no air or oxygen. It’s not an accident that the trees give off oxygen so that our atmosphere is continually replenished…when the realization hits you that all of these things might not be an accident, and that the balance of every microscopic element surrounding Earth on and on Earth is in perfect harmony to support us, you will feel an overwhelming sense of gratitude for life…” (p.202). Talk about breathtaking- in every sense of the word! 

Take a Breather!

Today, take 5 full deliberate breaths (in 5 times, out 5 times) 5 different times today. After you take a set of 5 full breaths, say the magic words: THANK YOU FOR THE MAGICAL AIR THAT I BREATHE. Be genuinely grateful. Think about everything and everyone that benefits from the air you breathe, think about how the magic of your gratitude could help bring clean air to a part of the world where people have to wear scarves and masks over their face, because the air is not pleasant to breath – it may even be painful or toxic. Today’s exercise is not only for you, it’s for everyone and everything on earth. 

As Always…

Add another 10 blessings to your Thank you list in the morning. If you’re having a hard time thinking of something, since we have come up with over 200 things so far, take a walk around your house. How do you keep your food cold? How do you cook it? And you now have at least 3 items (fridge & microwave, stove, oven). When the sun goes down is it dark in your house? Do you have overhead lights in all of your rooms? In my apartment, the only overhead lights are over the stairs and in the kitchen. At first it really annoyed me, but now I don’t get bothered by the lack of ceiling lights because I am feeling grateful for the plethora of lamps I have accumulated! I’ve got big lamps, little lamps – I have a lamp shaped like a belly dancer lady, complete with stringed beads hanging from the lamp shade! (it was a hand-me-down from my mother…when she first gave it to me it creeped me out lol, but when I moved and was deciding on what to keep and what to toss, I had planned on getting rid of the lady lamp…the shade was broken, the lady was dirty…but moving day came and I brought that lady up to my room and put her on my night stand, because I realized I should be grateful my mother gave me a lamp that she could have easily sold online, or kept for herself). 
When you go to bed, be sure to hold that magic rock and say thank you for the best part of your day! (like, breathing maybe?)

Magical Gratitude 28-Day Challenge: Day 22

We are almost to the end of our 28-day challenge! This month has FLOWN by! They say time flies when you’re having fun, and I’ve certainly had more fun this month! My mood has improved, my patience has improved, my luck has improved (and considering it was almost non-existent before, that’s saying something!), and most of all, I’m feeling grateful for so much! It’s been snowing all weekend, and instead of thinking “oh this sucks, I have to shovel this damn walk way” I thought “I’m so glad I have warm boots and gloves and a shovel to clear my walk way! And I’m blessed to have been able to get my son a nice snow suit, so he can play in the snow while I clear the path and dig out my car, and don’t have to worry about him getting soaked through to his clothes.”
Have you noticed any differences in how you look at your world? in what you think? in how you react to things?

The very first desire that I received was bringing joy to millions of people through my work. The rest of my desires magically followed, and one by one, as they appeared before my eyes, I crossed them off my list. So now it’s your turn to use gratitude’s magical power to make your desires appear before your very eyes.

Byrne, p. 197

Top 10 Desires

We are going to be working with our list of desires today. At the start of your day, after you add 10 more items to your Thank You List, get your list of Top Ten Desires out. Read through each sentence and desire on the list, and for one minute imagine/visualize that you received your desire. Feel as grateful as possible. If you have a hard time with visualizing, then imagine your desire came true and conjure the emotions you’ll feel when that desire comes to you.  
Byrne tells us “…no matter how big your desires seem to be, you can receive them through gratitude. Even more than that, gratitude will bring a joy and happiness for life that you’ve never felt before, and that is truly priceless.”I am confident that this is true. I know since I started expressing gratitude even a little bit my life improved dramatically. Since this challenge began, I’ve been able to get 2 more clients, which will increase my income by 25% per month. That is huge for me! I’m so grateful – for the work, the income, the people who hired me, the person who referred me, and to myself, for not giving up on my writing business when things got hard. 
This isn’t something that Byrne suggests, but I recommend that when you hold your magic rock and say thank you for the best part of the day, you say thank you for the best part AND say thank you for achieving your number one desire. Re-read it and imagine it before you go to sleep. Think about how you will react, what you will do the day after you receive it, who you will tell, how they’ll react…even imagine if you’ll post it to social media, and if so, what will you say? The more detailed your imagination the greater gratitude you’ll feel, and the more gratitude you have means more magic which will bring forth your most deeply desired goals. 
As always, THANK YOU THANK YOU THANK YOU for reading!

Magical Gratitude 28-Day Challenge: Day 19

 

I hope everyone had a great week! Finally the weekend! We are due to get a major snowstorm up here in New Hampshire, so I will be spending the day preparing for that- going shopping to stock up on food, water, batteries, candles, diapers and wipes for my son. The local Walmart has just gone through a make-over, so I cannot find anything in there anymore! I will wander around craning my neck for what seems like forever and when I finally decide to flag down an employee more often than naught I’ve already passed the aisle I’m looking for.
I do get a lot of steps in when I decide to go there though, which is perfect for today’s magical practice! Today is Magical Footsteps – taking 100 thankful steps.

Following in Albert Einstein’s Footsteps

Today’s practice is inspired by Albert Einstein.

You may take any number of steps you’d like at anytime, anywhere you’d like today – so long as you meet the 100 steps total. With every footfall you think “Thank you”. Left foot thank you right foot thank you…you get the idea.
Byrne promises that this practice will make you feel happy, even if you are in a rotten mood before you start. She writes “It doesn’t matter if you can’t get much of a feeling of gratitude while you’re taking them; I promise you will still feel happier afterward. If you’re feeling down, Magic Footsteps will make you feel better, and even if you’re feeling great, Magic Footsteps will lift your spirits even higher!” (p. 177). She also notes that you should spend at least 90 seconds on this – it’s how long it takes the average person to take 100 steps apparently. She goes on to say that the practice isn’t so much about the steps, but it will take at least 100 steps in order for the practice to make a difference.
If Einstein said “thank you” 100 times EVERY DAY, then we can do it at least one day out of our entire lives (and maybe we will start making a habit of it – maybe not 100 but maybe 10, or 30, or 50 times).

As Usual…

Start out your day by writing 10 more blessings on your Thank You list, and then before you go to bed take your rock, hold it tight while thinking of your day, and say Thank you for the best part of the day.
Until tomorrow my lovelies!

Magical Gratitude 28-Day Challenge: Day 17

Welcome to Day 17! 

Who is having an amazing week?
So, yesterday I got some news that was really frustrating at first. I was stomping around my house, worrying about the repercussions of the news. Then I realized, I had taken something for granted, and it only makes sense that I was going to be receiving less. I went up to my room, took my Magic rock, and thought about the situation. My first thought was, things will be more difficult, but I will figure a way out. No sooner had the thought crossed my mind did I realize that really, I wasn’t going to lose out at all. I have something else that I will start getting, which will more than compensate for the loss of the other. I’m sure your quite confused, but my point is that this practice helps you see where you are lacking in gratitude. It gives you a perspective that you’ve never had before, and therefore brings more magic into your life because you start appreciating even more. I don’t want to go into exact details, but I will say it has to do with money. It’s funny I had a little panic over money yesterday when today is all about getting more money!

Magic Check

Today we are going to write a check out, to ourselves, for an amount of money we need to do something that we would be incredibly grateful for. We can start small, and then when we reach the amount write a new check, or write it out for the whole amount up front. However you want to do it. As you can see from the photo below, I drew my own check, based on the check in the book. I could have photocopied it, or printed one off the website – http://www.thesecret.tv/magiccheck – but I felt that if I put time into drawing it, I would be able to clearly visualize what I would do with the money, and feel all the more grateful when I finished. 
When you are done writing out the check, hold it in your hands and play out in your mind what you are going. to do with the money. Envision that the check is real, and you are about to leave for the bank to cash it. What are you going to do? Who will you tell? See it as detailed as possible. 
Take the check with you today, or put it somewhere you can see it. You are to take the check into your hands and repeat the exercise two more times today – saying THANK YOU, THANK YOU, THANK YOU each time. 
At the end of the day, put the check where you will see it daily. Every day look at it and feel grateful for the money to do or get whatever it is you desire. When you truly receive the money, write a new check for a new goal. 

In the magical universe there are no coincidences and there are no accidents. Nothing happens unless someone wills it to happen.

William Burroughs

Side note:

So I actually started the challenge on the 31st, so I could write the blog posts ahead of time and then set them to publish the day of. I just realized that for some reason these are publishing the day after, and I apologize for that! I will try to catch up, so they can go live when they are supposed to from now on. As always, THANK YOU THANK YOU THANK YOU for taking the time to read these posts, and hopefully be skipping along through the month with me with an attitude of gratitude!

Magical Gratitude 28-Day Challenge: Day 16

Magic & Miracles in Health

Byrne states that “We should feel healthy, energized, and full of happiness most of the time, because that is how it feels to have our birthright of full health.” (p.149). I cannot disagree with her; while I don’t always feel energized, and I often feel the extra weight I carry around my hips and middle (and everywhere else), I am happy most of the time. But, based on the Universal Law of Attraction, if I were truly grateful for my health, then I would be healthier. I have a condition called narcolepsy, which causes me to feel sleepy often. According to my sleep specialist, I have no natural circadian rhythm. If you were to go to bed at the same time every night, and wake up the same time every day, then you would not need an alarm clock because you would just wake up at the normal time. You get hungry at the same times every day, have your second wind at the same time – you get the idea. With me, I could go to bed and wake up at the same time every night and day, but I always need an alarm clock. Some days it is almost painful to wake up at my normal time, despite getting 10 hours of sleep, while other days I wake up 4 hours before my alarm and feel wonderful. Some days I wake up with my stomach rumbling, but other days I don’t even think to eat until I’ve been awake for hours. I have to take a medication to keep me from taking “micro-naps”, which is when you fall asleep without warning for a few seconds. As amusing as it may sound, it has cost me jobs and got me into a car crash. The medication helps me wake up for the day, and helps me stay awake during stressful situations. I do not like having to take pills to function, but I’m grateful for them. Without them, I would not have come this far in the gratitude challenge! I would not get up to bring my son to school, I might get into accidents with my son in the car. Based on Byrne’s theory, if I’m grateful for feeling energized, I will overcome my ailment. I must be honest, I’m not sure if that will work – but I’m willing to try! I will start taking a moment every morning to feel true gratitude that I am awake, that I was able to get my son safely to school, get myself safely home, and stay awake to write when I get home. Gratitude has brought a lot into my life that I thought was not possible, like happiness, so my health could improve!
Saint Augustine said:

Miracles are not contrary to nature, but only contrary to what we know about nature.”

Today’s Exercise

We are going to take a three-pronged approach to “accelerate the results”, as today’s exercises are “designed to dramatically increase your health and happiness”. (p.151)

  1. Health you’ve received in the past: Think about 3 ties you have felt on top of the world, and say the magic words THANK YOU THANK YOU THANK YOU !
  2. Health you’re continuing to receive in the present: Feel grateful for every organ, system, and physical sense that is currently working well in your body. Think about your arms, legs, brain…Choose 5 functions of your body that are well, and one by one, mentally say the magic words: THANK YOU THANK YOU THANK YOU !
  3. Health you want to receive in the future: choose one thing you want to improve about your body. Think about the ideal state of what you want to improve, and give thanks for the ideal state.

Natural forces within us are the true healers of disease

~Hippocrates 

Magical Gratitude 28-day Challenge: Day 15

                        

Magically Heal Your Relationships

Byrne starts the chapter off by saying:

If you have a difficult or broken relationship, are suffering from a broken heart, or hold any resentment or blame toward another person for anything, you can change it through gratitude. Gratitiude will magically improve any difficult relationship, whether that person is a husband, or wife, brother or sister, son or daughter, partner, boss, business client, work colleague, mother- or father-in-law, friend, or neighbor. 

P. 141
Chances are, you are not grateful for someone when you are harboring angry feelings. You’re angry, so you can’t be blamed for not stopping to think about why you’re grateful for that person. Gautama Buddha, the founder of Buddhism, said:

Holding on to anger is like grasping a hot coal with the intent of throwing it at someone else; you are the one who gets burned. 

There is some merit to the broken relationship; you just have to look closely to see it. I have a troublesome relationship with someone, but if I stop to think about it, I have a lot to be grateful for! That person has made a lot of great things happen for me. Today, we are going to make a list of 10 things we are grateful for about one person we have chosen to mend a relationship with magically. The list should be formatted like so:
Person , I’m grateful for_______.

As always…

Start the day with your thank you list, and close the day with your Magic rock!
Until tomorrow my lovelies!

Magical Gratitude 28-Day Challenge: Day 14

Wow, we are half way through the challenge! Who else has noticed a change since the magick of gratitude has been growing in your life? Isn’t it incredible? I’ve noticed that I’m cheery, even in the mornings when I have to get my son up and ready for school after he woke up in the middle of the night or didn’t go to sleep at his normal bed time (I follow a routine and he’s in bed at the same time every night, but there are a few nights a month when he is just a spaz and spends have the night thrashing around playing in the blankets). I’m noticing my blessings much more, like having a great heater in my car – again especially in the morning when I take my son to school! It has been 5-10 degrees most mornings this winter, and I am so grateful my car warms up quickly! I’m grateful to have a car too! I see parents walking with their kids and 1. feel awful for them, and 2. feel so blessed that I not only have a car, but a reliable car that runs well, gets good gas mileage, and is even kinda cute! (I have a Toyota Matrix)

Have a Magical Day

So, you may have noticed I posted this article the night before instead of the day of. That’s because we are going to start our gratitude exercise FIRST thing in the morning. When you’re getting dressed or taking a shower, go through your plans in your mind from the moment you are done getting ready for the day to the moment you get into bed. After you think about each event, think about how grateful you are that it went to plan – you’re in the mindset that the day has already happened, and you’re not imagining but you’re remembering. I hope that makes sense lol, but you have the book I’m sure, so, you can read through the chapter if you need clarification.

Being grateful for your day beforehand creates a magical day through the law of attraction. 

The Magic, p.133

By the time you imagine yourself getting into bed, you are feeling immensely grateful that you had the perfect day! Have you ever noticed that when you wake up cranky, it’s Murphy’s law – you stub your toe, get soap in your eye, you lose your keys, your kid spills their breakfast all over themselves and the floor, you can’t find your favorite earrings and this is all before 9 am. But when you wake up cheerful, everything seems to fall into place. The light goes green the moment you drive up to the intersection, your co-worker surprises you with a coffee or a bagel. Your kid gives you a big hug when you drop them off at school (my son LOVES school, so I usually have to chase him around the classroom to get half a hug and plant a kiss on his head). So, you’re feeling awesome about the day. Before you move onto the next step of your morning routine, conclude your magical exercise by saying “And thank you for the great news coming to me today!”.

Don’t forget!

Make sure to add another 10 items to your Thank you list, and before going to bed you hold your Magic Rock and say thank you for the best thing that happened during the day!

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