How I Found My Voice on Instagram

When you think of Instagram, you might think of selfies or celebrities, but Instagram is so much more than that. The reason I was drawn to Instagram in the first place was that I could control the content I see. My issue with Facebook was always that it was nearly an obligation to be friends with someone, and that meant you would have to see all their posts, good, bad, and ugly. With me being so sensitive to energy that often meant just opening Facebook would cause me to process and clear other people’s emotions.  Instagram is entirely different, you follow who you want, they choose to follow you back or not. If someone starts posting things I don’t want to see, I can unfollow them. No big deal, no hurt feelings, and most importantly for me, the experience is as positive as I make it.

Because of this, I decided to really make a good go of being on Instagram in July 2017. Plus, I have over 10K photos and I really needed a place to share them. I had an older account that I had started, but really had done anything with, @karenedowning . When I started back I was trying out different topics, posting photos of all topics, blog posts, vegan food, affirmations, past life patterns, and I certainly didn’t know much about engagement. I would follow people I was interested in, in in the hope that they would follow me back, and that seemed to work. But, my problem still was what to post.

From July to September of 2017 posting on Instagram was a mystery to me, I would just pick something and share it with a few hashtags, thinking that was enough. My description would be a few short words, like, “picture of flower”, or something similar. Not exactly an original caption!

Near the end of September, I began to be aware of some the photo feature hubs, and I joined onto one as page moderator. For those who don’t know what a photo feature hub is, it is a place on Instagram that features original photographs from other photographers and Instagram users. A photographer will use your page hashtag in their description, to put forward their picture for a chance to be featured. As a moderator, I learned so much about posting, hashtags, images, and content. It was an incredible learning curve. A short 3 weeks after becoming a moderator, I was asked to be an administrator of the page, the duties moved from only posting pictures, to engaging with the audience, sharing Instagram stories, creating graphics, and so much more. I also become the administrator for the photo hub’s challenge page and learned about how to run a photo challenge.

In December 2017, the photo hub I was a part of split into two different hubs, and the admins and mods were asked to choose where to go. I still didn’t have much experience (I thought), and so I followed some of the people I had connected with to newly named hub. While here, I started to admin a third page, and also became one of the lead administrators for the entire hub (about 60 Instagram pages). My new duties here included training new moderators, creating even more graphics, and also handling personality conflicts at times. It really pulled from my HR background. I learned so much from every person I met and every task and duty I had.

This went well for a few months, the new hub grew, and my knowledge also grew more and more. I started to get inspired ideas about why something worked (or didn’t), and begun to research more about different ways to post, share, engage and grow a page. Eventually in late March of 2018, I saw some things in the hub that I didn’t agree with, and I chose to leave. A friend of mine encouraged me to start my own photo feature hub, and the first page, @Colorful_challenges , went up on April 3, 2018.

During the month of April, I added 7  hub pages to my photo feature hub, called @Colorful_clicks ! I was able to take my knowledge and apply it to this new hub, and learn more about what works, and what doesn’t. Plus, since it was only me, I was also free to experiment with different ways of doing things, including trying out new Instagram features, like IGTV. At the time of this writing, 3 ½ months after starting out, over 4000 photographs have been tagged to #colorful_clicks for a chance to be featured on the main hub page. Phenomenal!

Now, here comes the part about how I found my voice. So, during all this time, I had connected with amazing photographers from all over the world, who are all passionate about sharing great photos as well as words of kindness and encouragement. This was the world of Instagram that you would never know about if you didn’t follow these pages! With so much positive energy and encouragement swirling around me, it gave me the confidence to share more about myself to push the boundaries beyond my fear of judgment.

From July through the end of 2017, would experience an incredible amount of fear when trying to figure what to post, who would like it, would would be upset by it, how to say it in the best way, etc. But, what I learned from all of this is to simply be myself, drop the façade that had become my security blanket, and allow the words to flow free. Only with giving myself permission to be truly free in my expression, was I able to find my voice.

Last Saturday, while at my mom’s birthday celebration, we were talking about Instagram. I expressed how I had learned so much over the past year. My brother-in-law replied with something so profound for me, “Imagine if you applied that to your business!” It took a moment to settle in, and my fearful resistance initially tried to pop up. But then, oh my goodness, it just clicked into place for me. That is what the whole year had been all about, to learn about Instagram, and to work through the fears of judgment and ridicule. The very next day, I started an IG account for my business @Your_soul_mission . It is the place for affirmations, past life patterns, blog posts, and vegan foods. I will still hang onto my other accounts, they are part of the fun!

On Your_Soul_mission, my posts are no longer one sentence descriptions, they tell a story, they are a part of me, as I finally feel free to share my vulnerabilities, and to be a person, not a well-groomed façade. In my previous blog post, I wrote about cracking the façade, and how it important it was for me to bare my truth in such a public way. I found my voice in that journey, and can’t wait to see where it will lead me.

Are there outworn patterns of fear that have become your security blanket? A good way to find out is to take the Past Life Quiz and read about the different past life patterns. One of my patterns is the Infidel, where I had been persecuted for my beliefs in previous lifetimes, and I had such of fear of saying or doing the “wrong” thing, that it would holding me back from experiencing who I truly am. I do not want to be in the prison of the past any longer, and I’m sure you don’t either. When you are ready to have some help with working through your challenges and growing your past life gifts, consider my Past Life Discovery program. Thank you and Blessings, Karen

P.S. Be sure to follow my new Your Soul Mission Instagram page!

Cracking the Facade – Perception Perfection part 2

June 16, 2018

This is going to be a different kind of post today. This post is my homework from Spirit to be more transparent and vulnerable, as to release my own perception perfection. As many of you know, I have a past life as Marie Antoinette. It is one of my most famous past lives, and I gotta admit, probably one I am least proud of. Throughout this year, I have been getting messages from others that I have not yet released all the Marie energy. This goes to show how large of an effect our past lives have on us, even when we know of them!

Last weekend, Spirit suggested to me to re-watch the movie, Marie Antoinette. This is the modern version, and while it doesn’t show everything, it is enough of a window into the lifetime to gain some new insights. There were three big takeaways from this viewing of the movie for me. 1) She kept herself in a state of indifference about what was going on around her. At some point, she was mature enough to be able to pay attention to the outside world, but she preferred to keep her blinders on when it came to the hardships of others. 2) She never had a handle on her emotions. She wasn’t in touch with what she was really feeling at any moment, and those moments when she did feel something, she just stuffed it right back down inside of her. 3) She had pride about her reputation. She was so very concerned with wanting to portray herself a certain away, and to not allow others to see any flaws or weaknesses.

When I reflect upon how her life has impacted mine, I can see that I am and have been guilty of all three of those points. I have been aware of the first 2 points more than the 3rd, and I have experienced all of them in numerous ways. Yet, it is that third point that has really hit home for me lately, hence this homework assignment from Spirit.

So, my homework is to share with you all of my vulnerabilities, challenges, and difficulties of the moment. Trust me, I do not want to share all of what is going on in such a public way, but when Spirit gives homework, it is a good idea to do it!

Since the beginning of this year, we have been experiencing financial challenges. We have had several times when we did not have much to eat, and we have been consistently behind on our rent payments. Thankfully, we have a very nice leasing office here (and have lived here for 8 years) and were able to make payment arrangements in the past. My mom has also been a great help to us when she was able to. And, now we are in a tough situation again with our rent. We had two big payments due to the apartments to keep our place. One was due on May 29th, and we have paid that one, due to the kindness of a client who paid early for a course. But, now we are approaching out next big due date of June 18th, and we still need $1800 to prevent eviction proceedings from starting. However, once that is paid, we will be caught up!

We have been pulling funds together all we can, even forgoing some important website bills to get the money together to make these payments. So far, we have been making it through, but always bringing us to the very edge. This has been teaching us many things, but most if all it has been about asking for help, being honest, and also trusting in spirit that a solution will arrive, even if in surprising ways.

This week, we did not have any food on Wednesday and Thursday, and thankfully a payment came in Friday to help us buy some food and get the website and email back up. As we were getting ready to go to the store, we looked out the window to discover the car was gone. We knew we were behind on car payments, and it had been towed away to be repossessed sometime in the early hours of Friday morning. We were able to borrow my mom’s car yesterday to help us with running errands. So, now we have groceries, but no car, and we are needing prayers and positive energy to help us get back on track with the remainder of what is due on the rent by Monday.

This is our Perfect Storm. In some ways, it is challenging us like never before, and that is a good thing for soul growth. But, we still have to live in this world where money is a requirement to pay for bills, rent and groceries! We have been calling this our moment of transcendence, and we have been persevering, and continuing to move forward with doing our work, despite what we have been experiencing in the material world.

Now, I’m certain there are some portions of this situation, that because of my past life as Marie, require me to be learning in this specific manner. I understand it all logically, but it is still very difficult emotionally to go through. Especially now, to lay it all out bare for you to judge and see with your own eyes. Marie felt so judged, and that fear of judgment carries through into my life now. It is one of my greatest fears to be judged by the world as a fraud, hack, joke, or even to be seen as speaking any untruth. Some of you may feel that way about me, and you are entitled to your beliefs. I am merely writing this post today to challenge my own beliefs about myself, to learn to be 100% vulnerable, and to share it all anyway, so I can break down the wall I have put up to protect myself from the world’s judgment.

So, I’m not sure what else I need to say here, other than I have shared my challenges with you. I have laid them bare and cracked open my Pollyanna facade to share what I have been experiencing. One thing that we all need to remember is that when someone is releasing their big past life energy that it is THE most difficult thing they will ever through in their life. But, once it is released and gone, they are free! I am hoping that by writing this today to be free from Marie’s influence for once and all!!!

Also, if you have been considering a course, session, coaching program or email report, I would so much appreciate it if you would sign up at this time. I am even offering a 25% discount on my biggest course, the 5-Day Intensive, which is also now available on Skype.

If you find yourself in a similar situation to us, know that you are in our prayers and thoughts, we ask ask that you hold us in yours. Thank you very much for reading.

Update June 17: We have now met our Rent obligations. Thank you all for your kind words and for the heartfelt messages I have received. I cannot express how difficult it was for me to share this post. I am overwhelmed by your generosity, kindness, and love! Thank you.

Update June 20: After many phone calls with our car finance company, we were able to make arrangements to get our car back, and it is now in our parking spot again! They even waived some of our fees.  Prayers really do work, and I thank you all again for your words, prayers and generosity. You have given me more inspiration than I can ever express thanks for! Thank you to each of you, and I wish you all prosperous returns of your blessings ten-fold!

Karen

Landing on Your New Path

Originally posted on Aurora’s Message (Karen’s old website) on July 6, 2014

Capitalizing on the May 19 slingshot energy, many individuals have been feeling up in the air, in a space of not knowing where and when they are going to touch down. You were shot up in the air on May 19 with the powerful combination of energy, utilizing all of the astrological transits that April and May had to offer. Then for the last 7 weeks, you have been riding the arc of that slingshot trajectory, feeling like you are floating with little to no idea of what is going to happen next.

Add that to a chaotic feeling Mercury Retrograde period (ended June 30), and you can feel like you don’t remember which way is up anymore. This feeling is creating some physical symptoms to coincide with this spiritual launch forward. You can feel vertigo, nausea, dizziness, lower back pain, foot aches/cramping, restless legs, as well as an overall sense of confusion, like you feel unsure of the answer to even the simplest of questions.

These symptoms are the ways in which the body is interpreting the preparation for this upcoming landing. Think of it like your body is an aircraft, making its descent, and during the descent you are experiencing rapid changes in air pressure, deceleration, temperature and so forth. The body is doing its best to adjust to the rapid changes, and coping by experiencing some of the symptoms mentioned above.

Starting on July 16, as Jupiter enters Leo, this will be the day that begins the time of touching down on your new path. All the while you were up in the air; Mercury Retrograde was clearing out your path below, dusting it off, clearing the way and trimming all of the weeds.

Now as you prepare to touch down (again), you will not be shown the fullness of what is ahead for you, until it is upon you. You will be landing blind! I am sure for some of you, the thought of this is quite frightening, yet it is necessary. It is necessary because the Self (Ego) has become so adept at expecting, anticipating and even manifesting its assumptions, that it was required to restrict access to foresight about your new path.

So how will this new path look? For some, it will start with a substantial change in their life. Examples of this can be a change in an existing business, moving to a new location, changing jobs, etc. For others, they will begin to receive resources that can assist them in taking the foundation they have already been working on and bringing that to a greater level. And, the third option is that this new path brings a new round of individuals experiencing their own spiritual awakening. In fact during this Jupiter in Leo period (lasting until August 11, 2015) you will see spirituality discussed in the mainstream media in a way that was never thought possible before.

The lesson for all during this time is to learn to let go of what each of the next steps will look like on your path. Certainly, you can have some general goals and aims to focus on, but in order to best make use of this energy in your life, it is recommended to learn to let go of all of those smaller steps in between.

You will know the when and how of each step only at the moment when you need to know, and not sooner. Think of it like turn by turn directions, where you only hear the one next step you need.

Most of all be patient and learn to let go of the need to push things in order to make them happen. If you do this, you will discover that this tactic feels chaotic and stressful. Instead, go with the flow of your spiritual GPS, your intuition. It will show you exactly where you need to be at the right moment you need to be there. Learn to let go of the time you WANT to be there, and allow yourself to flow with God’s time.

Your new path is ready, and you are ready to land on it, why not do so with peace, connectedness and trust that the Universe possesses all of the wisdom to know the best route to take. If you feel your Self trying to push against you, simply say the following affirmation: “I surrender. I accept. I trust.”