What makes a great leader?

What makes a great leader? Knowledge, smarts and vision, to be sure. To that, Daniel Goleman, author of “Leadership: The Power of Emotional Intelligence,” would add the ability to identify and monitor emotions — your own and others’ — and to manage relationships. Qualities associated with such “emotional intelligence” distinguish the best leaders in the corporate world, according to Mr. Goleman, a former New York Times science reporter, a psychologist and co-director of a consortium at Rutgers University to foster research on the role emotional intelligence plays in excellence. He shares his short list of the competencies.


Realistic self-confidence: You understand your own strengths and limitations; you operate from competence and know when to rely on someone else on the team.

Emotional insight: You understand your feelings. Being aware of what makes you angry, for instance, can help you manage that anger.


Resilience: You stay calm under pressure and recover quickly from upsets. You don’t brood or panic. In a crisis, people look to the leader for reassurance; if the leader is calm, they can be, too.

Emotional balance: You keep any distressful feelings in check — instead of blowing up at people, you let them know what’s wrong and what the solution is.

Self-motivation: You keep moving toward distant goals despite setbacks.


Cognitive and emotional empathy: Because you understand other perspectives, you can put things in ways colleagues comprehend. And you welcome their questions, just to be sure. Cognitive empathy, along with reading another person’s feelings accurately, makes for effective communication.

Good listening: You pay full attention to the other person and take time to understand what they are saying, without talking over them or hijacking the agenda.


Compelling communication: You put your points in persuasive, clear ways so that people are motivated as well as clear about expectations.

Team playing: People feel relaxed working with you. One sign: They laugh easily around you.


   We’re on our road, path, trail or 道 as it’s written in Japanese. But this road gets clouded by habits. 
Some of these habits are physical. Some of you chew your nails, bite the inside of your lip or twirl to your hair. I tend to clench my jaw. 
Habits come in the form of a pseudo spiritual behavior of either blaming or chastising God, or even giving God the glory. 
Some of its mental such as complaining, seeing only the bad side, beating yourself up or criticizing others. What I’m really interested is the habits of the mind. 
One could say that they are all mind based habits. The thoughts or feelings causing the behavior could be coming from a thought. 
So on this journey I have really started to feel restless. I don’t have an income source, I’m using my savings to go on this trip and ‘find myself’ and I’m spending a lot of time alone. What I have noticed is emotional habits. Thoughts that keep me from being fully presents. Ideas that keep any sort of self compassion from flooding or even trickling in. 
The last two days it was the belief that I’m not well liked, not attractive or successful. It shows up like this. 
My friend is encouraging me and she typed in her text “ok, enjoy your trip!” and I think “oh, she’s done with me, I’ve bored her to tears with my fears and she doesn’t want to talk to me anymore. Fine, I’m not going to text again!”
This thought stirs up resentment, anger, and a sense of abandonment. There’s no room for compassion. This takes me into victim and there’s no compassion in being in victim state. So I’ve started apologizing to my inner self. 
“I’m sorry you don’t feel safe right now. I’m so sorry your life isn’t exactly what you want it to be right now. I’m so very sorry you can’t trust your ability to forgive. ”
Once I’ve started to say I’m sorry, I notice that I relax a bit. My other habit of grinding, clenching and tightening my jaw, relaxes. I don’t feel so foolish AND it creates a safe space for me to check in with my friend. “Are you done with me today?, Do you think I’m foolish for feeling this way?” And because she’s my good friend she reassures me and another layer of tightness releases. 
I get the same effect when I ground my body but sometimes the emotion is so high, I can’t find where I’m grounded. A their way I get relief is from is Hoʻoponopono (ho-o-pono-pono) which is said to be an ancient Hawaiian practice of reconciliation and forgiveness. 
I Love You, I’m Sorry, Please Forgive Me, Thank you. 
And another way is to ask “what else is possible in this moment”?  
With so many ways of clearing my emotional self, it still begs the question, why don’t I. Much like exercise, which my body loves, and writing, which my mind craves, doing the things that make me feel the best are often just beyond my grasp. So over the next few days, I will continue to clear and observe my habits and add the practice of profound and deep self-compassion and see where I end up. I’ll keep you posted! Peace, Paula. 

Day one or Three

I spent the weekend at Spirit Rock, in a day of volunteering and silent meditation. It was pretty amazing. 

Two huge insights 1) I much prefer the idea of raising my vibration if I’m not feeling correct than the energy of acceptance. I like knowing I can change and I completely am gaining evidence in the concept that if I/it doesn’t feel good then I’m out of alignment with my -“highest self”. 

2) That so much of my life has been spent asking for or chasing after validation. 

More on this later, but for now, in headed out. Please share with your friends. If like to see as many people as possible following this cross country journey. Perhaps my insights will be of help to others. Thanks. Paula 

How can I be of service?

  Last week I was “supposed to” be in my car driving. Somewhere. I know I’m going north, east, then north again, then south and then west with some other directions tossed in for filing.  I don’t yet know my exact destination except to  #bindercon {bindercon.com} which is a women and gender non-conformist writers’ conference in NYC. 

However my car,  who’s simple repair has taken days to complete, apparently has other ideas. Maybe she doesn’t want to go on this long journey? For whatever reason, she’s choosing the shop. 

So, I’m in a rental.  I get to practice  how & where to stay in a safe manner, this weekend. I get to figure out my sleeping car mattress and some other stuff such as where to shower. 

My adventure has begun though. My mantra is ‘how can I be of service to myself and others?’  

Without sacrificing my health or well-being, I’m inviting situations that will help me to continue to grow and develop. I’m also looking to have a very good time. 

So here’s the meditation to start this journey. 

As usual I ground my body to the center of the Earth. Saying hello to the earth, cosmos and sky, I allow their energy to flow in and out of my body, creating a cycle of connection. 
In my mind’s eye, I see before me a symbol of my journey. In this case, a lotus blossom or crown chakra. I ground the symbol and ask all non-helpful energies to step out,  returning to their origins, never to return to me. 

I end all contracts and allow only former new and conscious creation. 

Any and all helpful and capable beings can line the road, coming when I call or if I’m in dire need of help and for some  reason, can’t call. 

The road is set at platinum. And the intention is awareness, joy and taking this next step to many things, but mostly the understanding that I no longer need to seek aapproval, that there is no lack, only the perception of lack as well as a huge permission to vibrate at the highest possible frequencies. 

Everything I need will come to me. All is well. 

Coming up out of trance I feel a deep peace. I’m ready. Thank you car for giving me the space to prepare completely. All happens exactly as its meant to, or it would happen differently. 

If it Feels Bad, it’s Not a Truth

So often I hear my friends, colleagues, clients say to me, “I hate feeling, so and so (whatever this is). Sometimes its fear, neediness, looniness, anger, depression, loneliness, etc.

This is what I know to be true, though sometimes it’s hard to remember it. If I’m feeling something, and it feels bad, then I’m believing something that’s not true.

The icky feeling is not anything to be afraid of, it’s just information. It lets you know that  you are out of energetic or vibrational alignment with what is true.


What it is not is weakness, silliness, uselessness, time wasting or anything else like that. It is only information. Am I believing something that is not true?

Grief is a great big example of this. We feel grief at a loss when we believe that the thing shouldn’t have happened, or when we believe there is lack now that the thing happened or the person is gone. You feel the grief because you believe that there is now lack. There can never be lack. Things never ‘shouldn’t’ have happened. When you believe that, then you start to release your attachment to the ‘shoulds’, which cause you pain.

The fires in California are devastating on so many levels. I have been in suffering for 2 days knowing everything that has taken place. I feel for the people and especially the animals. As an empath, I feel what they feel, to some degree. But I finally realized that I was making myself suffer when I feel like there is lack, there are victims or that it shouldn’t have happened.

This type of disaster brings people together like nothing else. They oftentimes come when we need such togetherness. Nature doesn’t mind the fire, but we do because we hold on to our physical life as though it has meaning. In all the fires, only one person has died and only 4 firefighters have been seriously burned. That’s incredible odds. Seeing this as a disaster causes me suffering. Seeing this as an incredible success only leads me to joy. What do you think?

Call for Prayer, Healing and Rain

Hello Everyone

– I’m having a teleconference and prayer circle / energy healing for the flora and fauna (including people) affected by the fires  as well as a call for rain. Please share this and post it. Let’s get as many people involved as possible, please.
1. Please join my meeting, Sep 14, 2015 at 3:00 PM PDT.
2. Use your microphone and speakers (VoIP) – a headset is recommended. Or, call in using your telephone.
Dial +1 (646) 749-3131
Access Code: 717-976-301
Audio PIN: Shown after joining the meeting
Meeting ID: 717-976-301
Online Meetings Made Easy®
Not at your computer? Click the link to join this meeting from your iPhone®, iPad®, Android® or Windows Phone® device via the GoToMeeting app.



Fundamental Beliefs

We have Untrue Fundamental Beliefs about ourselves and the world. Just because we have this/these beliefs, doesn’t mean they’re true. Trouble is, the beliefs feel so incredibly true, it feels real. 

Here are my fundamental beliefs. 1) my presence causes harm. 2) people don’t really want to be around me. {they kinda go together, as you can imagine}. 

So I know it’s not true, but as Ms Andrews starts to tell us in The Sound of Music ‘somewhere in my youth and childhood…’, I complete it  with ‘I must have done something bad’. 

My life is good, and as I count down my last 2+ weeks of corporate job to head into the adventure of self-employment, my excitement mounts, but in the back of my mind, there is this nagging voice. I react to a small hint of that which feels like rejection. It’s the only place I truly feel weak. AND it goes against what I know to be true. – 

    1. My thoughts create my reality, or at least my experience of it. 
    2. There’s nothing wrong with me     
    3. I’m in charge or at least, co-creator. 
    4. I’m not alone. 

    The ‘I’m not alone’ part, we’ve discussed before. There’s another energy, entity or being that is inputting itself, or being called to interfere or act on your behalf. I came across such an entity recently I found in a woman I was attracted to. 

    I’m shy around her, which is incredibly uncharacteristic of me. I’m nearly embarrassed. I went in to meditation to read the situation for myself, and saw a warrior being protecting her space. Fascinating and something I’ll need to work with in order to be in her space. 

    Yes, we are all one in a very broad way, but from my perspective, there are beings without physical bodies who interact with us, just as beings with physical bodies do. 

    I’d love to invite you to work with me on you getting to know you. 

    Peace, Paula 

    Reality it doesn’t exist

    IMG_2181 6So, I know that reality doesn’t exist. I know that, beyond a shadow of a doubt, that everything is without meaning and neutral. The only meaning that exists is the one we give it. 

    Why do we give life meaning? What is the purpose to this practice? Perhaps we are simply using our imagination. Maybe we are doing it for a source of amusement. 

    Think about one thing in your life that is a cause of stress or joy. Think about the way the same situation would be without your opinion. 


    Be where you are. Wherever that is. Simply be there. 

    Go to that place in your head where you can turn on the tv and see your life, you. Be an observer. Now give that life you are observing a grounding cord by connecting it, the very image to the center of the earth. The cord can be  anything. Just let it drop.

    In doing so you bring the image to present time. Present time is now, now, now. One could simply say ‘the present’. Each time you ground your life you bring it to the present. But don’t let it stay in or on this image. Your life is not stagnant. It’s constantly moving. 

    But just for a moment, notice that when you ground your life, bring it to present time, it’s still. All the drama and karma, stop. You’re simply observing your creation. What is your life like without a point of view? Quiet, eh?

    One other thing I know is that despite all this knowing, I get triggered, lit up, annoyed, frustrated, grief stricken and sad. Along with joyous, delighted, encouraged, excited and glad. 

    Sometimes moving out of the annoying feelings can be a challenge, especially because I KNOW that it is all an illusion

    So, when I can remember to ground my life and uncreate and destroy all that doesn’t allow for me to be in present. Right now, then I am free

    A Few Words on Want



    Before reading the rest of this post, today, take a moment to check in with your body. How do you feel. Are you in present time? If not, check in. If you have been reading these blogs, you know how to ground yourself. Be aware of your body, your clothes or chair against you skin. Be Here Now..


    What do you want? As soon as you read that, you probably created a list of things in your head. Money, New Job, Freedom, New Relationship, Sex. What do you want? Make a list in your head, think of all the things you want..

    Check in

    Now, pay attention to your body. Are you still in present time. Are you here, now? As I noted on my tweet today, “The word ‘want’ puts your desires always out of reach, into the future. What would happen if you said ‘I have’, instead? Try it!”@clwpaula


    Manifesting is different from wanting. If I’m wanting sex, I can lie here and long, be restless and frustrated. Or I can create it. While my actual desire is to be with someone in the flesh, if I close my eyes and bring the experience right here, into my bed, it is as if the experience is live.

    We do the same thing creating our lives. Imagination comes into play. Take a moment to imagine one thing you want. Be fully in the vibration of having it (not wanting it). The idea is to get out of the longing sensation of wanting it and into the feeling of having it.

    It’s tricky, because we have wanted, all our lives. Spent our entire beings, wanting. But now the trick is to have. You will find if you think on things you have manifested, it’s been done without effort and most likely without longing.

    Asking for help

    Tomorrow I’ll write about asking for help from beings without bodies, entities, spirits. Whatever you’d like to call them. We will practice receiving.

    The paradox. Or para-sox 

    Now what


    Photo- Paula Bowden

    I want a feeling but I don’t want it. I want to miss you, but missing you makes me feel vulnerable. I want to spend money, but having money makes me feel bourgeois. 

    What do I do white two conflicting feelings?   

    Which feeling is mine? Am I in the present? Is one feeling my mothers’ fathers’, etc? How do I know,

    There are many descriptions for the thing that mak s us stop in our tracks. 

    You’re not alone in there

    It may not be yours.

    So many of you may be confused about why you can’t control an emotion or feeling, despite the processes of changing your thoughts. It’s possible that you’re confused as to why an emotion won’t go away. It could be that it’s not you in there, all by yourself.

    There’s a great belief that there are other entities with and without bodies you may have called upon on purpose or inadvertently to help you through  tough times. The best way to find out if an emotion or reaction is you, is to simply ask ‘is this me? and wait for the answer. Don’t question it if it is a ‘no’ – I’ve seen so many people hear no, then tell themselves ‘yes’ because they can’t believe that it could be anyone else’s because it feels so incredibly real.

    Another good question is ‘Go back to whence you came, never to return again!’ If the emotion or feeling changes, quickly, then you know it wasn’t yours.

    Does it matter who’s it is?

    Not really. You could look at it in meditation or ask a good psychic (like me) to check it out for you. But mostly you can just let it go. Here’s the meditation

    Ground your body by connecting a grounding cord from the base of your spine, to the center of the earth. Allow it to hook in, creating a good connection. If comfortable, close your eyes. Go to the center of your head, between your temples, at the sides and between your forehead and back of your head. Just see yourself there. In your mind’s eye, see an image of yourself. You can see a TV or movie screen in front of you, if it helps. You can have your favorite comfy chair to sit in. Turn on the monitor and see an image of you, a clear outline of your shape.

    Think about the thing you’re thinking about. Hater clear blue energy in your hand. See yourself toss this energy onto the image of you. That which isn’t you will turn purple.

     If you want to know who it is, you can ask, and the answer may come to you immediately. You may see an image of a being without a body, or hear a name. Don’t worry about it, and don’t blame them! You’ve invited it in some lifetime, or it wouldn’t be there.

    See all the pieces with grounding cords, and connect them up to the earth, or to the universe or god as you see god – whatever works for you. No matter what, let it start to drain out of you, and replace it with your energy filled with joy, happiness, laughter, etc. Open your eyes.

    That’s one simple way of releasing energy that doesn’t belong to you. Happy releasing!

    Peace, Paula

    You are what you eat, and think

    Feelings as the creator 

    You, I, we are the ultimate creator. Some believe there is one Source, and we are the manifestation of that one source, so that it can have expression in physical form. Others believe that there is only us, we, it – that the world is a hologram existing from our perspective. I truly do not know which is true. Maybe they both are, maybe neither. But what I do know is that I  my thoughts & mind generate my feelings and it is my feelings that generate my reality, such as it is.

    My story

    I started out a Catholic. I’m sure I was a good one, but it only lasted until I was 7 or so when a babysitter decided I needed to be baptized in the font of her Baptist church. I was a good Baptist for a year or so, until my mother died. Then I became an atheist because in my sweet, innocent mind, no good god would take away a child’s mother.

    I did the atheist thing until I moved in with a foster family. I don’t remember the type of church we went to, but it was the holly-roller type and I dutifully became a 12 year old born-again christian. 

    That lasted until I was 19 when I realized I was lesbian. The two worlds didn’t mix and I quickly became an atheist again. Same logic as before – what good god would make his daughter gay, if he hated it so. I had an experience of choking on a communion wafer during one hot, Sacramento summer, and I imagined god had forsaken me, and left the church.

    As I write this, I realize for the first time that this has quickly become a model for the way I do relationships. The moment I feel disappointed by a friend or lover, I’ve abandoned the relationship. Interesting -This will change,  but I digress.

    In 1995, my eldest sister was diagnosed with bran cancer. I left my job in Sacramento to move to San Francisco to be her care-taker. While there, as she went through her surgery and treatment, I felt everything. The radiation pellets in her brain were in mine, her nausea was my nausea, etc. It made caring for her difficult. When I met the woman who would become my wife for the next 18 years, she told me I was an empath and to take classes.

    I found myself enrolled in a Spirit Guide class at Berkeley Psychic Institute where I learned the basics of grounding and how to chat with a Healing Guide which is essentially a Being without a Body who wants to help you grow and learn for your sake, but mostly for it’s own growth. I was amazed that I was able to see one with my eyes closed, feel her healing and detect her presence.

    Mind you, I was an atheist, though and through. There was no way that anything that wasn’t physical existed, at least in my mind. But there it was. 

    I learned how this being could plug into my hands and assist with removing energy that doesn’t belong to me, and much to my delight, other people as well.

    As my sister got more ill, she went into a hospice. I needed to work, so I moved back to Sacramento to enter a vocational school,  and my soon-to-be wife asked me to continue to take classes so we would have common ground in our marriage, so I completed the year long course at the Berkeley Psychic Institute of Sacramento. This was in 1997. I saw spirt, I saw that which I interpreted to be god. I was no longer an atheist.

    For the last 18 years, I have searched for truth. Like many before me, I’ve listened to different thought leaders, meditated, didn’t meditate, I did countless healings and readings, abandoned my psychic practice, took it up again. I’ve done everything but drugs to find the thing that truly resonates with me as that which makes the world go around. I have preached many things. Through all this, there is one thing that has been a constant: my thoughts control my happiness.

    I have been at the depths of despair, considered ending it all and been riddled with anxiety. I’ve been incredibly happy, esoterically so, sometimes in the same hour or minute. Throughout it all, there’s only been one constant. My thoughts. Am I believing stressful thoughts or am I questioning them? Am I choosing a different thought. If my thought about myself has made me feel anything but good, its a lie.


    Right now, think of something about yourself that makes you feel less than good. Feel it, think of it. You notice that you feel sad, disappointed, hopeless. Now I’m going to ask  you to do something that takes no thought. Your reply should be instantaneous. Ask yourself. “Is this true?” If the answer is anything else but no, leave me a comment and reach out , we have some work to do. Most likely the very first response is “no, this isn’t true.” Then your mind swoops in and changes the answer because it wants to believe badly about yourself. I don’t know why. So, now you are there. You’re feeling badly. You know this feeling, all generated by your thoughts! That’s it! Nothing else. So go the other way. Find something good about yourself. What makes you think that you’re the only person in creation who doesn’t deserve to be here?? Of course you do. You are kind, loving – there is something about yourself that is good. Find it, hold on to it. If you can’t think of something about yourself, find a thought that causes you to feel GOOD! Allow yourself to feel it and know that this is your reference point. You must love yourself, and you’ll get there, one step at a time. Start now. Make yourself feel better. With your thoughts. Now!

    Now think about this same thing, but in the opposite.

    HAIR the Musical, Life reflection and defense

    So I saw HAIR, the musical in Sacramento, today. Incredible, increasing my vibration and bringing me amazing joy. “Let the sunshine in.”

    To live a life of joy, be aware of what you are sending out. My first truth is “If I’m in defense, I loose.”

    When was the last time you felt like defending yourself? Maybe you were driving and got cut off, and heard your inner voice explaining to no one physically present, why you got mad. Maybe something happened at work or school where you felt accused and felt the need to defend yourself from someone else’s opinion. We may feel the need to defend our opinion or for some of us, even our very existence. Once you’ve chosen defense, you no longer have choice, and you have lost. What have you lost? Your inner peace.


    Find your feet. Be aware of your feet on the floor, in your shoes. If you don’t have feet, find or be aware of the farthest part of your body away from your heart. The idea is to be aware of your body. Breathe and close your eyes if it helps. Imagine an event today, this week or year where you felt the need to be in defense. Ask yourself the question “I had to defend, is it true?” and let your mind tell you all the reasons you felt you had to defend. Then, keep asking. You don’t have to come to an answer, but the freedom is in the asking. not in the defense. Watch yourself in defense. What are you putting out? What is radiating from you? Are you putting out what you want in the world? Now see yourself in the same situation but not defending. Now, what are you putting out? Is this more of what you want? We feel the need to defend when we believe our thoughts, believe our mind. You have the ability to create  your life right now. What are you creating?