Those of you who follow my column on a regular basis know that I often think about and ponder the question: Is it possible to lead a 100% authentic life? In fact, I’ve often called on my pals Shelly Wilson and Jill Lebeau to help me work through this philosophical question. And...I’m continually passing on my Guide Group’s admonitions to take action in order to move ourselves forward.
It’s easy to talk about living an authentic life and taking action to make changes; it’s something else entirely to do these things. And so, I’m always on the lookout for folks who are doing these things in order to inspire myself and to inspire you, my wonderful readers; and today I want to share with you the progress that my pal Paula Renaye is making on these two fronts. Her experiences have already helped me move forward, and I’m hoping they will provide inspiration and motivation for you, too.
Sherri: Hi Paula! Thank you for agreeing to share a bit of your recent journey with my readers today. I know that ‘limiting beliefs’ is something you work hard to help people push past in your practice and in your books. Tell us about what you worked through recently with regard to your name.
Paula: Well, Sherri, I have had plenty of those limiting beliefs around having my name changed. I was certain it would take forever, require tons of paperwork and would end up in some big huge expensive ordeal that I would have to hire an attorney to deal with. So, I put it off. Still, every time I had to speak or use my ex-husband’s name, it made more and more uncomfortable—it wasn’t me. I hadn’t taken my maiden name when we divorced because, as an adoptee, that name hadn’t really been me either. Actually, no name ever had until I began using Paula Renaye, which is a variation of my middle name, professionally several years ago. That name made me feel more like the real me inside than I ever had in my life. I loved it! The problem was that it wasn’t technically “real”—I’d made it up—it wasn’t legal and it kept me stuck explaining who I was or wasn’t on any given day. I didn’t feel congruent or authentic. It was mentally confusing, and it was energetically holding me back from taking action in important areas of my life.
Finally, a couple of weeks ago, I sucked it up and went to the courthouse to find out what I had to do to make myself official. I miraculously found the correct office on the first try. They didn't have name change forms, but they gave me a sheet with general self-help tips and website. I got busy figuring out what to do, found the sample forms that seemed most appropriate, filled them out and then took what I hoped was the correct paperwork to the clerk the next day.
That was on Friday. I had serious doubts about the paperwork being correct or “enough,” but the clerk assured me that if there were problem, someone would call and let me know what else was needed. Monday morning, bright and early, they called. After a brief moment of panic, I grabbed a pen and paper, ready to take copious notes on what I needed to do. I know I must have sounded like a crazy woman, asking her to repeat herself, but it just didn’t make sense. I could come by the courthouse and pick up my signed name change order? Say what? It couldn’t be done already, just like that! But it was. The judge had signed the paperwork Friday afternoon and they had filed it officially Monday morning then called me. My “big huge expensive ordeal” had taken less than two hundred dollars and one business day!
And then, it started to sink—I was now officially me! I had done what I needed to and the universe had supported me—at warp speed! As a special bonus, Spirit came through with another beautiful—and divinely serendipitous—confirmation message. My original pre-adoption birth certificate listed my name as Paula Renee with my birth mother’s surname. To bring things full circle, the judge who signed the court order shared that very same surname. That is not coincidence. That is a gift. An incredible gift!
Sherri: Paula, you probably don't know this, but I made up my last name after a divorce in 1980, for much the same reasons--my maiden name simply did not resonate with me. What you've just shared is such confirmation of being on the right path and validation for taking action! I too have put off many things because I thought it would take too long or I didn’t want to deal with the aggravation. In almost every case, what I was doing went very smoothly and I wondered, “Why did I put this off for so long?” And you know what I love about what you’re going through? It’s that you are taking the advice that you give in your wonderful book, Living the Life You Love, and putting it to work in your life. You don’t just spout the words, you are walking your talk, and that is why you are someone that I continually try to model myself after. You’ve inspired me so much with the way you’ve moved past the limiting belief about how hard it would be to change your name, and then taking action to become a more authentic you. What advice do you have for our readers about how they can push back their limiting beliefs and start to take action that will move them forward and allow them to enjoy and love life?
Paula: Most of the time we don’t really pay attention to what we say or think or even feel—we just experience it in a flash and automatically do whatever we always do next. That’s what I did. The beliefs in my head said that if it involved legal paperwork and judges and filing things, it was going to be difficult, time consuming and expensive. I kept saying I wanted the name change, but in the next breath I’d justify why I hadn’t done anything about it. Finally, I actually listened to what I was saying and realized that I had no basis in fact for my excuses. If I really wanted what I said I did, I was obligated to get the truth about what it was going to take. Then, I’d either do it or have factual excuses for why I was choosing not to. That one simple decision changed everything.
So, pay attention to your thoughts, your words and your feelings. Catch those fleeting thoughts you don’t want to admit before they zip away—they hold the keys to your own self-limitations. Really hear the words that you say to the world and to yourself, and then decide if they are true and if you want to keep using them. Once you know what’s really going on—what you’re thinking and saying and why—what to do about it becomes clear. Here’s my go-to phrase from my book and it is ultimately the one that finally pushed me to take action: What are you willing to do get what you really want?
Ah! Dear Readers, it comes back to paying attention to our thoughts, words and also our feelings and the action that we are willing to take. That little voice within is our Higher Self working hard to help us make the right decisions for ourselves. I used to think that we had to suffer to learn our lessons and move forward, but Paula, Jill and Shelly have taught me that this is not the case. And not only have my Guides helped me understand that my gut provides the best advice possible, they have also helped me realize that following our joy is something that will help us move forward with greater ease as we seek to live a more authentic life and do the things that we came into this life to accomplish. Namaste.
About Paula Renaye: Paula Renaye, CPC, QHHT, CEH has over 20 years in the metaphysical and healing arts, helping people relieve pain, forgive the past, release shame, blame and guilt and heal on all levels so they can live joyful peaceful lives. Paula is a Certified Professional Coach, Reiki Master Teacher, QHHT regression hypnosis practitioner and EFT facilitator. She is passionate about helping people find and clear unconscious blocks so they can feel good and live their purpose, passion and highest potential. For more information on her coaching services and a list of upcoming classes and workshops, please visit www.PaulaRenaye.com.
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