Was Henry a Student, Teacher or Angel?

I teach in the Human Services department at Long Beach City College and Henry was my student one Fall semester. He didn’t make it to final exams. He died while lying in bed reading, two weeks after he did something very special.

Henry was a Veteran who was enrolled in two of my night classes. He was galvanized. From the tiny snippets of information he gave me about his life, I can piece together nothing less than a life of anarchy and chaos. But Henry wanted to use his life for good. He wanted to be a good father, he wanted to be a good student. In fact, he was highly passionate about it.

One night, I passed back tests after a mini-lecture on the importance of studying and how you generally get what you give when it comes to grades. Henry did poorly on the exam and he was clearly not happy with himself. He came to me after class to tell me that he really took it to heart what I said. He joined the computer lab, he stayed on campus all day. He looked me in the eye and promised he was going to do better.

When I offered to give extra credit to students for bringing in outside speakers, Henry arranged a to have a speaker come to class. But he wouldn’t tell me who it was. He was so enthusiastic. He would say things like: “you’re not going to believe what this student of yours can do,” “Bring your camera” and “man, you are not going to believe who this speaker is.”

Needless to say, this piqued my interest.

Who the heck is this special speaker Henry booked? Were they famous or something?

The night of class I saw Henry standing in the parking lot, clearly looking to connect with the speaker for the evening.

I admit, I glanced around to see if anyone looked familiar.


By the time class started I was definitely curious. Then, in walks a woman who was my roommate 22 years ago and even a bridesmaid in my first wedding. This is the person I lived with when I was a waitress, working multiple jobs and studying for college every chance I got. A woman who decided to get her own education and now has a master’s degree. A woman with a 22-year-old daughter in college.

Whoa, can you take a few moments and let that all sink in?

I was the COLLEGE PROFESSOR and she was the guest speaker with a Master’s Degree who worked with veterans! Henry’s enthusiastic participation and act of kindness created a “full-circle” moment and a sense of gratitude that I felt in my cells. This event gave me a renewed enthusiasm about the journey we’ve all been on for decades.

Two weeks later, Henry is lying in bed at the Veteran’s facility where he connected with my former roommate. She was his counselor. He was reading books and his on-going issue with heart disease ended his life.

Was Henry a Student, a Teacher or an Angel? You decide.

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Who You Are Without Your Story of Limitation on The Sheri and Erin Show

In this show we talked about the difference between “wanting” to be something versus knowing who you already are. If you are perseverant and focused on your strengths, you can access your best qualities all the time.

It requires practice to become your best self. You can have greatness within you but it won’t be realized unless you work with it. Just like you have to work your body to see changes in your muscles, you have to spend time honing your own qualities. You have to fine tune your instruments which are your mind, body and soul. One of the first steps to becoming strong is to attain inner peace. From a place of inner peace it will seem as though there are no obstacles, fear will disappear and action steps will become clear.

The question is, how can one maintain inner strength and conviction even when difficult life events and feelings come up? And, why do we sometimes keep thinking negative and worrying even though we know it’s self-destructive?

One reason is because much of our self-defeating talk started before we reached the age of 5. Prior to the age of 5 our brain is so receptive that it will assimilate any information it receives. After the age of 5, we repeat the same patterns we learned in infancy. Not only that, for our entire youth and even adulthood, we model the world based on what we learned at home. Sometimes what we modeled was downright insane yet most of us didn’t even know what we were doing or how destructive it was to us and those around us.

Spiritual growth/development takes work just like maintaining your house or your car or your body. If you neglect your mind, your emotions and your spiritual self, you will get the results that occur with all things that are neglected: deterioration, root rot, overgrowth, etc. Generally, most things that are neglected go wild, stagnate, decay and eventually die. If you want your mind to be healthy, you need to keep it filled with fresh ideas and you need to get rid of what’s not productive.

Another way we can abuse our minds is by “beating ourselves up.” Remember, you can’t grow something and chop it down at the same time. An important step in breaking free from beating yourself up is self-forgiveness and letting go.

Just because you let go doesn’t mean you deny your life history, instead, you focus on facts versus your story of limitation. For example, I could say I ran away from home, that is a fact. The story that hurt me was telling myself over and over again that I was “no good” and that the world could not be trusted. Know the difference between the facts and the story you made up about yourself. Drop any stories that are keeping you small because you could be beating yourself up with your own story even when you could be using that same story to lift yourself up. Don’t get addicted to your story, it can keep you strung out and stuck for decades. Decide instead what you want the story to be and take steps to make it happen.

If you can’t see the player below, click here to listen to this episode.

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If you relate to the concepts presented in the show or want to explore them further, join us on Wednesday’s at 1:00 PST/4:00 EST on the iMasteryRadio channel on Blog Talk Radio our guest call-in number is: (347) 857-4645.

To be galvanized is to be free from fear, strengthened by Life, bold enough to be whole and to have fun doing It.

Illness is a Healing Opportunity on The Sheri and Erin Show

On this episode of The Sheri and Erin Show we explore the possibility that illness might actually be an opportunity to heal old beliefs and attitudes.

As a part of the healing process, attitudes and beliefs are updated and sometimes it becomes necessary for the body to update itself accordingly by releasing toxins or letting go of disease.

We explore beliefs and attitudes like unworthiness and “beating yourself up” as well as attitudes such as grandiosity and self-pride and how the two are simply a different manifestation of the same root problem: fear or lack of love for self.

This episode uses stories and analogies to help listeners let go of limitation and achieve “ah-ha” moments.

We read a passage from A Course in Miracles on page 544 under the heading “Many Forms, One Correction” that said “The aspects that need solving do not change, whatever form the problem seems to take” and discussed what that means in our personal life.

If you can’t see the player below, click here to listen to this episode.

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To be galvanized is to be free from fear, strengthened by Life, bold enough to be whole and to have fun doing It.

Jimi Hendrix, Hippies, Love and Creating Lasting Change on The Sheri and Erin Show

This episode of The Sheri and Erin Show was one day after we watched 2 documentaries on the Bio channel, one about Jimi Hendrix and one about hippies. We discussed how music impacts people and how everything is intertwined.

We are all connected and when one of us is bold enough embrace authenticity and creativity, to break free from “right/wrong” reality, it can impact many people for decades to come.

We discussed the power of love and the value of accepting people for who they are as well as the damage of judging and categorizing groups of people like “hippies”.

The hippie movement left a lasting impact on society at large, even on those who were not hippies. Hippies created a cultural shift in California that can be felt to this day.

We discussed the difference between Truth and illusions. One way we keep illusions alive is by being afraid, feeling guilty and clinging to something we heard or experienced a long time ago. We keep illusions and pain alive by bringing old memories into present day reality.

The idea that you did something “wrong” is what keeps you in bondage. The moment you forgive yourself is the moment you are free. You can choose to be “In Joy” and enjoy your life or you can stay in bondage to the past, it’s all a matter of perception.

Sometimes you have to acknowledge your pain and take steps to heal it. Not all pain and wounds can be washed over by thinking positive. Ultimately we are the only ones who can heal ourselves. Experience is the best teacher. Acceptance is the key to freedom.

If you can’t see the player below, click here to listen to this episode.

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To be galvanized is to be free from fear, strengthened by Life, bold enough to be whole and to have fun doing It.

Creativity, Lady Gaga and Bullies on The Sheri and Erin Show

In this show we discussed how some people cut themselves off from creativity at a young age for a variety of reasons. Sometimes we are distanced from our creativity because of fear of rejection and disapproval or we learn to deny our creativity and authenticity because we have been bullied by others. Erin shares a story about her son and how he uses his imagination during play.

We discussed the role of creativity in innovation and the interview on OWN with Oprah and Lady Gaga. We discussed how our cultural contempt for creativity has damaged many aspects of our lives from family life to government.

We discussed how againstness and “right/wrong reality” create problems on a personal, professional and global level and how bullies suffer just as much as the people they bully. We discussed how sometimes we are our biggest bullies and the bullying we do to ourselves can often end up hurting others when we lash out. We discussed how living in the box mentally keeps you and your loved ones in prison and how to live free by accepting others as they are.

If you can’t see the player below, click here to listen to this episode.

Listen to internet radio with IMASTERY Radio on Blog Talk Radio

To be galvanized is to be free from fear, strengthened by Life, bold enough to be whole and to have fun doing It.

The Impact of Music on Our Spiritual Self and a Tribute to the Power of Soul Train

Music is a great medium to evoke miracles in life and an immediate shift in perception. In this show, Sheri and Erin discuss the passing of visionary TV producer Don Cornelius and the profound influence Soul Train had in their lives.

Sheri and Erin discuss the inspiration that creates music and the inspiration it provides to listeners. Music can move the spirit in a way nothing else can and even instrumental music or music that is sung in a language the listener doesn’t understand can evoke a deep emotional response that can be healing and enlightening.

We were joined by singer/musician and creator of affirmationsforliving.net, Edwige Bigue and she shared the spiritual nature of music and the power it has to connect people.

Listen to internet radio with IMASTERY Radio on Blog Talk Radio

If you can’t see the player above, click here to listen to this episode.

My Life’s Symphony: Fallout, Clean-up, Repurpose

At times, repurpose and refine go hand in hand. Said another way: the symphony of life has it’s high’s and low’s, and each aspect of life can be reused or refined over time. This inspiring video with Benjamin Zander is a great demonstration of the impact refinement plays in mastery. It has a underlying message which is “don’t give up”. If you keep at it, you’ll get better automatically.

Sitting still and practicing transforms the nature and quality of Life. Malcom Gladwell writes about mastery/refinement like this: “do something for 10,000 hours and you are a master.” In relation to Life I would say that means 10,000 hours of doing something a new way or practicing a skill can lead to mastery in that skill.

Just like sitting at a piano practicing scales makes you an improved player, your habits and routines define the excellence of your craft.

This is all moving in a very Harry Potter direction that could become confusing and overwhelming. So rather than pontificate to the point of boredom, I will do this; I will end here and invite you to review the story as it’s been told so far. See if you can make the connection between refinement, repourposing, mastery and resiliency. If not, I’ll be back next month to try and explain.

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Story is Editable