January 8, 2014 (Wednesday)
“I can. I will. End of story.” – Unknown
What does it mean to truly live for you? What is guiding the direction and path of your life? It’s a new year – about a week in. Does it feel different? The same? Any changes? Are you living the learned lessons of 2013 today?
The New Year for me strongly feels like a year of execution and implementation – turning thoughts and ideas into reality. I’ve mentioned this before but Jack Dorsey said the motto for Square is, “Show. Don’t tell.” I’ve decided to make it my life motto and plan on using it generously this year. I keep asking myself – How am I walking my talk? I have a deep desire to turn my desires into reality. No more distractions. No more excuses. No more blame game. It’s time.
2013 was a year of learning my lessons. I learned them very well. I think I passed that life class because I find myself living the lessons this year. It’s really settling in. I like having moved into my “new home.” “The move” was a long and arduous journey at times but I’m here and so happy to be “unpacking” all the baggage to create a new, beautiful home.
Tyler Perry just posted on Facebook regarding life, change, and being uncomfortable to get to the next level. I used to resist change. Hard. It led to a lot of suffering because I was fighting the inevitable and trying to control things I had no control over. Now, when change occurs, I meditate on it, receive, allow, surrender, and don’t resist. I now trust it’s the Universe taking me to the next level because it has something bigger and better for me. It always does based on past experiences. What I thought was awful and uncomfortable at the time always turned out to be for my highest good.
During the past few months, the inner changes I’ve been experiencing deal with replacing the old thinking and beliefs that I always needed to do something major or extreme to feel worthy, important, and accomplished. I’ve realized that I don’t need to climb Mt. Everest every time, so to speak. Once in awhile doesn’t hurt but not always. I’ve switched gears to focusing my life habits and practices on the micro, like how am I showing up for myself everyday? The world? My friends? My work? Etc.
It’s the little things that add up into mountains ultimately. I’ve brought it back to basics. Eat healthy. Sleep well. Exercise as often as possible. Smile. Love. Laugh. Surround myself with good, positive, healthy, uplifting people and circumstances. Get around nature as much as possible. Live in gratitude. Stay positive. Let go. Keep moving forward. Treat others the way I’d like to be treated. Forgive.
I’ve learned that when I can do the basics to the best of my ability moment-to-moment, day-to-day, it starts inevitably bleeding into other areas of my life. I show up better for work. I’m less cranky and angry. I am more open so I welcome high quality people into my life. I was able to let go of drinking, which was one of the hardest things to let go for many years. I no longer seek external validation excessively to feel like I’m ok.
Everyday can be a new year. Everyday can be filled with miracles. I used to think miracles were these huge moments or that I needed to wait till December 31st for a new year. I now know that enjoying a hot cup of delicious tea is a miracle. Being able to drink clean water to my heart’s desire is a miracle whereas it’s a luxury for many people around the world. Being able to reach out to people I love and to even have people I love and who love me in my life is a miracle. Being able to be there and be present for myself every single day is a miracle. Never having to worry about my daily bread is a miracle. Being able to open my eyes everyday and close them every night safely is a miracle. Being able to write this blog, Divinely Made, is a miracle where I get to speak my truth and share it with the world. Having freedom of expression is a miracle where my voice is heard and respected. Being able to use my body everyday for what I need is a miracle. This is how I want to live everyday of my life, with as much awareness as I can possibly bring daily.
I needed to hit rock bottom last year to get to this place of gratitude and mindfulness. Without darkness, how would I know light? Without anger and hatred, how would I know forgiveness and love? Without tough economic times, how would I know prosperity and abundance? Without self-loathing, how would I know self-acceptance and self-love? Without self-destruction, how would I know self-discovery and inner strength? Resiliency?
That is the beauty of life. We keep discovering ourselves everyday. We surprise ourselves at times when we didn’t even realize we had that much love, hatred, anger, forgiveness, compassion, etc. residing within ourselves. We keep growing, learning, taking 2 steps back, 3 steps forward, falling, standing up, destroying, rebuilding. We are no different from civilizations and nations. We have an inner government, “political parties” living in our minds that debate and argue over what’s in our best interest. Sometimes, we attack the wrong “nation” and have to make amends. Sometimes, we neglect our own “people” and need to redirect our attention and “funds.” Sometimes, we have to replace the leadership from a toxic leader to a positive leader of growth and change. Sometimes, we have to declare war and clear out the space for new things and people in our lives.
There is a Buddhist tenet that life is suffering. Life is hard. No doubt about it, no matter who you are, what your economic status is, no matter what. As a society, I think we really admire the people who are able to take this challenging life and make something beautiful, meaningful, and purposeful out of it, like the farmers who reap and sow juicy, delicious, fresh fruit and vegetables. People who can take pain and transform it into purpose…People who can inspire others through their story of going from underdog to top dog. People who overcame things we can’t even fathom.
Despite life’s difficulties, I think…Now, I know I am in it for the long haul, no matter what comes my way. Our inner strength and willpower come from a Divine Source we cannot explain. It’s majestic how we can’t explain life’s mysteries. It adds a dimension of awe that transcends our mortal human understanding.
So ultimately, I think 2014 will be a year of living moment-to-moment, day-to-day, brick by brick, seed to seed, one salad, one step on that treadmill, one deeply intimate night with a friend, one blog post, one book, one soul mate, one smile, one love at a time…
As Lao Tzu said, “A journey of a thousand miles begins with a single step.” May we all take life one-step at a time and rejoice in the present moment.
Living For Today,