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Langley author believes book will help women

"Chris Ruddy, author of the new journaling book, A Love Centered Life, relaxes in a close moment with her two children, Kilah, 2, on her lap, and Megan, 4.Matt Johnson, staff photoWhere to find itA Love Centered Life, by Eileen Dooling and Christine Ruddy, is available at the Whidbey CyberC@fe in Clinton, and on line at Amazon.com and Barnes and Noble.com. The cost is $14.95. There are two states of being, says Christine Ruddy. Two basic emotions that govern our decision-making process: love and fear.We can choose to live from love or from fear, Ruddy said. The co-author of a newly published book, A Love Centered Life, and a new resident of South Whidbey, says the volume is designed to help women choose to live from love, by understanding the process of choice and gaining control of their own lives.Choice is empowerment personified, Ruddy writes. Fear keeps us in the same place, doing the same things over and over again. Loving ourselves is exactly the opposite. It consists of changing, growing and learning.The new book, written with Chicago psychotherapist Eileen Dooling, offers a method the authors hope will allow women to sort through the conflicting messages they hear and understand the basic principles of positive and negative that govern everybody's decision-making process.Once we understand universal laws, we are then able to put them to work, the authors write in their introduction. We make the conscious choice to act solely from the state of love. It is only when we live a love-centered life that our self-realization unfolds in a natural way and leads us to unexpected heights of awareness.A Love Centered Life is in essence an exercise in journaling, in the form of a year-long calendar in which the writer can record daily occurrences.You can work on personal growth every day, Ruddy said. If things happen during the day that make you fear, write them down. You'll discover what happened last week, and you can choose to be in control of your life, not just react to outside events.The text at the beginning of the book talks about love and fear, and offers ways to gather personal information, then process and assimilate it to achieve what the authors call a balance. They also talk about personal power and the stresses that lead people to give it away -- to anger, criticism or insensitivity.The book includes suggested journal questions to help process love- and fear-based interactions. There are also lessons in meditation, and affirmations for each day of the year.The commitment to live in love rather than fear needs to be cared for and cultivated through deliberate action, the authors write. It is vital to create a daily awareness of our intentions, actions and responses in each activity. Journaling and meditation are time-proven ways to attain that heightened sense of awareness of universal love.The two women who wrote A Love Centered Life have degrees in psychology and have worked in school programs and counseling. Each has two young girls: Ruddy's children are ages 2 and 4; Dooling's girls are 4 and 6. Both also say the idea for the book evolved with their own need to examine their actions and consequently their lives. They started journaling, and discovered that in the process of writing down daily events, analyzing them and their responses to them, they learned a great deal. It became clear that fear-centered decisions breed more fear, and all love-centered decisions beget more love, they write. Living from love with a grateful heart is the gift we give ourselves.Here on the island, Ruddy plans to teach a community school class, and she will speak at the Whidbey CyberC@fe in February. She also offers in-home workshops for groups of about six women, who will be able to share their confidences in a comfortable, safe environment. Ruddy can be reached at 221-4036. "

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