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Tag Archives: purpose

4 Ways To Be “Like A Flower” On May Day & Every Day


“Be like a flower and turn your face to the sun.”
—Kahlil Gibran

When I was a child, I always looked forward to May Day—it was one of my favorite days! In my Catholic grade school, it was tradition for the teachers to name one of us girls the “May Day” queen. The May Day queen would lead a procession around the statue of Mary in the garden, while wearing a crown of flowers on her head.

There were so many reasons I loved this day, but honestly, a really big reason was that crown of flowers! Flowers have a way of making everything feel even more special. So, on this May Day, let’s celebrate springtime by taking a look at a few valuable life lessons from the beautiful flowers that brighten our world.

When we look to nature for guidance with just the right perspective, we can find hidden messages, as well as bold statements, in nearly everything! Flowers, especially, with their bright, bold colors have much to teach us. Isn’t it interesting that flowers are a lot like people? They come in a huge variety of shapes, sizes, fragrances, and colors, just like us!

Let’s take a look at these 4 ways to be like a flower, and begin budding—so that we can unfold our beauty into the world:

  1. Take your time, but have a plan. A bud develops naturally with the purpose of someday blossoming into a flower. This is done with an intentional order and an inner knowing that nature has set it on its current path to fulfill its purpose in the world.
  2. Be daring. Opening up to the world to show what you are made of—petals and all—can feel a bit risky. But if a flower chose to remain a bud for its lifetime, it would never get to experience the wonders of the natural world or share its fragrance in a way that draws others to it.
  3. Be authentically you. A flower is not a certain way because it is called a daisy or a tulip or a daffodil. Flowers are authentically themselves no matter what they are called. This reminds me of William Shakespeare’s saying, “A rose by any other name would still smell as sweet.” This is a great life lesson: our authentic selves are not subject to labels, so why try to be a daisy if we are daffodils? Instead, let us rejoice in who we are.
  4. Live with purpose. A flower has a season, and during that season, it lives its life as fully as it can, carrying out its purpose of simply being a flower and all that entails. Some flowers decorate tables, some get distilled down into their oils, some return to the earth, and some provide nourishment. Whatever the case may be, the simple purpose of a flower is to bring itself into the world and live its life as best as it can.

Keeping these 4 lessons of the flower in mind can inspire us to have a renewed perspective on the beauty of just being ourselves fully and brilliantly for the season of our lives.


About Barb Schmidt


Barb Schmidt Barb Schmidt is an international best-selling author, businesswoman, philanthropist, and spiritual teacher with over thirty years devoted to spiritual development and research. In 2001, Barb partnered with Florida Atlantic University’s Peace Studies Program to promote dialogue in the greater community on the topic of inner peace. Additionally, she taught a class on meditation and spiritual practices as part of the life-long learning program at Nova University for five years. For the past ten years, she has been offering workshops and classes on spiritual practices throughout the world. A sought-after speaker, Barb regularly lectures at schools and organizations to spread her message of living a meaningful, happy life.

3 Ways to Be Inspired by Words of Wisdom


“We read to know we are not alone.”
—C.S. Lewis

Reading for inspiration is one of my most sacred and fun pastimes. The masters, mystics, saints, and teachers of the past have much wisdom to share with us. Through their experiences, they help us make sense of our world in ways we might not otherwise notice. They support us in our own struggles and decision-making when it comes to living life as we truly wish to live it.

Although this is a subject that is near and dear to my heart—and is, in fact, an essential part of my daily practice—it is not often that I focus on this much-loved activity when I speak about The Practice. Today, I would like to take the opportunity to share with you three ways to be inspired by the words of the wise men and women in our lives, both past and present.

  1. Study with the Masters
    One of the activities I write about in my book The Practice is called Studying with the Masters. I suggest choosing a book from the recommended reading list for The Practice—or another that you find inspirational—and start a process of copying down a paragraph (or even a single sentence) that has particular meaning to you. Then, in your journal or notebook, begin writing your thoughts on the passage. When you do this daily, you essentially become a student of that wise person, and the lessons learned will be carried within you throughout your daily life.
  2. Learn from Today’s Teachers
    There are many notable teachers today who have great insight to share on living with purpose, meaning, and well-being. Many have gone through hardships and express how they overcame life’s challenges in their stories. Others provide written guides for making the changes we wish to see in our lives. On occasion, they visit our hometowns to offer seminars and workshops. These books and presentations are wonderful avenues for exploring your inner world and transforming your outer world.

    Peaceful Mind Peaceful Life hosts amazing teachers who share their stories and teachings here at Florida Atlantic University in Boca Raton, Florida. Just last night, we had the rare privilege to be with, learn from, and be inspired by the first Western woman to become a Buddhist nun, Jetsunma Tenzin Palmo. She has been one of my most profound teachers for the past fifteen years, and I am blessed to call her my friend. If you are looking for a book to begin studying with a master, I highly recommend her most recent book Into the Heart of Life.
  3. Listen for the Words of Everyday Wisdom
    Another source of wisdom are the words people share with us. It may seem so commonplace that we sometimes fail to notice it! From small children to the elderly, everyone has a unique perspective on life—a different way of looking at things and approaching the world. Start to listen carefully to what people say, really be in the moment with Focused Attention, and notice when they say something that touches you deeply.

The world has many incredible sources of wisdom—from ancient times to the present day. Immerse yourself in reading—and listening—for inspiration every day. This beautiful practice of “Studying with the Masters” truly begins to transform you from the inside out! It is your class in Life!


About Barb Schmidt


Barb Schmidt Barb Schmidt is an international best-selling author, businesswoman, philanthropist, and spiritual teacher with over thirty years devoted to spiritual development and research. In 2001, Barb partnered with Florida Atlantic University’s Peace Studies Program to promote dialogue in the greater community on the topic of inner peace. Additionally, she taught a class on meditation and spiritual practices as part of the life-long learning program at Nova University for five years. For the past ten years, she has been offering workshops and classes on spiritual practices throughout the world. A sought-after speaker, Barb regularly lectures at schools and organizations to spread her message of living a meaningful, happy life.

4 Questions for Dealing with Obstacles


“Believe in yourself and all that you are. Know that there is something inside you that is greater than any obstacle.”
— Christian D. Larson

Have you recently been thrown off course by something in your path? If you answered yes, you can join the rest of us! We have all been there. We truly are in the same boat when it comes to traveling our life’s path. As you know, it is not a straight and narrow road. The individual paths we are on have many twists and turns that are meant to be wide and forgiving.

No path is complete without obstacles, of course! They present themselves to us throughout our travels, often at the most inopportune times. Obstacles can be something as simple as a traffic jam, as significant as life-altering news, as intangible as a fear or insecurity, and as subtle as a small but irritating “something in our shoe.”

Whatever the case may be, big or small, an obstacle is an unexpected stopping point on our journey. It temporarily or permanently takes us off course. When we encounter an obstacle, we have one of four choices to make: go around it, go through it, go over it, or go back the way we came.

If we have a destination or goal in mind, going back the way we came hardly seems like a good choice, right? Yet this is the choice many people make, because moving forward often seems like too much effort; they are too afraid of the unknown. Depending on the circumstances, maybe it is really a sign that there is another destination life has planned for us. But, on the other hand, maybe it is well worth the effort to move past the fear and believe in our ability to “weather the storm” that is blocking our way.

I offer these four questions to ask yourself the next time you are faced with an obstacle as an aid to help you get back on your path or to discover if there is something even more important for you to do:

  1. Can I go around it? This means finding a way to avoid the block, sidestepping whatever is in your way and moving forward in spite of it. You know the destination is worth your effort and whatever is stopping you may just be there to strengthen your faith in the belief that you are not alone, you are connected within, and you have the power to keep on moving toward your greatness.
  2. Can I go through it? This means finding a way to transform the obstacle into something you can easily pass through. This will take additional effort and patience as you become aware and get familiar with the obstacle and work through whatever life is presenting to you at this time.
  3. Can I go over it? This means finding a way to use the obstacle as a stepping-stone to bring you closer to your destination. Discovering a way to get over something that looks to be insurmountable takes some creativity and ingenuity, and with patience and guidance from your heart within, you just may see that what looked like an obstacle is actually an opportunity that furthers you along your path.
  4. Should I go back? This means acknowledging that the obstacle serves a purpose, possibly showing you that there is a different path life has in store for you to follow. This is your opportunity to take a close look at where you are headed, listen closely to your voice within, and decide if starting over from a new vantage point is more in alignment with what you want to do with your life.

If you are experiencing a block in your forward movement or if you feel out of sorts and off course, ask yourself these four questions. Sit with yourself in meditation and listen to the answers that are deep within your heart. Little by little, you will know what actions to take, having faith in your ability to stay true to yourself and your life purpose, no matter what obstacles life places on your path.


About Barb Schmidt


Barb Schmidt Barb Schmidt is an international best-selling author, businesswoman, philanthropist, and spiritual teacher with over thirty years devoted to spiritual development and research. In 2001, Barb partnered with Florida Atlantic University’s Peace Studies Program to promote dialogue in the greater community on the topic of inner peace. Additionally, she taught a class on meditation and spiritual practices as part of the life-long learning program at Nova University for five years. For the past ten years, she has been offering workshops and classes on spiritual practices throughout the world. A sought-after speaker, Barb regularly lectures at schools and organizations to spread her message of living a meaningful, happy life.