I had it all backwards. Self-care is the foundation upon which all else rests. I’m not just talking about eating right, getting enough sleep and exercising. I’m talking about spiritual Self-care. With a capital “S” for the larger self, the God self. As you have probably figured out if you’ve read any of my blog posts, the spiritual path is central to my life’s journey. How odd is it then that connecting on the inner has been so sporadic for me?
I think about God and Spirit a lot. I think about how the Universe works. I see Spirit moving in my life. I write about it all and feel that sense of connection through the writing process. But still, I know there is more. I yearn for it, and now that I’ve reevaluated my priorities, I’m willing, driven even, to take the time to pursue what that yearning is all about.
What is taking priority in my days now? Care of Self.
What does that look like? It begins first thing in the morning. Now, instead of getting immediately out of bed when I wake and stumbling into my usual morning routine, letting the dog out, feeding the dog, emptying the dishwasher… you get the idea, I stay in bed for an extra few minutes and listen to a guided meditation about visioning who I want to be (as in being rather than doing. Or, I’ll place my hands over my heart and mantra my way into heart/brain coherence. (See the blog post Got Heart.) Then, when I get up and move into the usual morning routine, it feels different, better, more graceful. During the day, at odd times, I refocus through gratitude, breath and prayer. In the evening I do another guided meditation. The result is that I’m sleeping better and feeling more aligned and balanced throughout the day.
It has become the basis of better days.
It is true that when the student is ready, the teacher appears.
Enter the guided meditations by Dr. Joe Dispenza. Dr. Joe as he is affectionately called, combines science and spirituality, teaching his students how to access and rewire their energy systems for healing and mystical experience. He has done extensive research into the effects of meditation, providing the explanations and proof for the Western mind, as well as the methods for how to achieve higher levels of consciousness.
His combination of rational scientific explanation and inspiring, exciting, guided meditations strikes the right balance for me. I am like a kid at a candy store, wanting to practice the many different guided meditations he offers on his website.
So, why is it that in the past I’ve given up on meditation? I’d stick with it for a little while and then I’d go back to focusing my attention and energy on the mundane aspects of daily life.
I believe there is a natural ebb and flow of energy between our small self and our large Self. Our small self, our ego, has a job to do. That job is about survival, which equates to managing the ins and outs of daily life. The ego will usurp all our attention if we let it. Focusing all of our time and energy into the 3D world of doing and having. That is until the large Self, our God Self, gently reminds us to refocus upon our being.
My God Self has reminded me not so gently during this year of 2020. The highs have been higher. The lows have been dark and deep. It has been challenging to find my balance, and even more challenging to maintain it. Fortunately, I’ve discovered an unexpected ally in my search for balance. Through the meditations I’ve had the unanticipated, loving experience of connection with my God Self and the inspiring experience of something very much greater. The natural effect of that is a desire to give back, to be of service.
This year of one calamity following another is a wake-up call. Now is the time to focus attention on what is most important. For me, that looks like putting the connection with my God Self, that is, Self-care, at the top of my list of priorities each day. From there, all else flows.
The TV blared sports casts just outside the door. Various magazines and newspapers were scattered haphazardly across the tables. The walls were covered with a matte light grey paint and fluorescent lighting glared down from white Styrofoam looking dropped ceiling tiles. The whole effect was one of cold austerity.
The room was warm and stuffy. Not a lot of air circulation going on. I had left my water bottle in the car which was now inaccessible, and my throat felt parched. The TV was droning on about acid reflux disease and I considered checking out the games on the computers around the corner.
An elderly gentleman entered the room with a middle-aged woman, wife or caretaker, maybe both, it was hard to tell. He sat in a chair in the well-lit area. She gently insisted that he get up again and move to the other side of the table out of the glare of the overhead light.
“You will be more comfortable,” she said.
“I can sleep anywhere,” he jibed, as he pulled himself to his feet. He moved over to the chair she pointed out, his socked and sandaled feet shuffling along the carpeted floor.
She sat down at the table in the seat he had just vacated and watched him settle in. She was unsmiling, her cheeks a ruddy pink, and brown hair curled over the collar of her jacket. Then she stood and walked over to the adjacent table picking up several magazines and a newspaper.
“They have Road and Track here. Or today’s paper, if you want them,” she said, holding out the selection.
“I’ll just sleep,” he answered, and pulled the rim of his green and tan baseball cap down over sparse, white eyebrows and pale, red-rimmed eyes. Large pink-edged ears and thin wisps of white hair stuck out from under the cap as his breathing slowed and deepened.
His care-taker wore a brilliantly striped sweater, jeans and black leather walking shoes. Her brown, pouchy leather bag sat on the table in front of her. She flipped absently through a women’s magazine reading with one hand folded under the side of her chin, jaw resting on her knuckles. Her wedding and engagement ring, obviously long-time residents, sat upon her finger, occasionally sparkling in the glare of the lights. She read quietly, patiently waiting, as we all waited. Some of us not so patiently despite the paragon of patience before me.
The elderly gentleman snored gently, proving that he could indeed, sleep anywhere.
Someone had changed the channel on the TV and a soap opera filled the room with erotomania and desperate conversations about kidnapped sisters. I found it hard not to get caught up in it. I peered around the doorway to see two other waitees in the next room. Settling back into my chair I could hear their occasional comments to each other about the unfolding soapy histrionics taking place in front of them.
I glanced about at the unchanging greyness of the room about me, filled with the panicked voices of the TV actors creating drama, heartache and murder for entertainment. Then the program went to commercial break and strains of “You Are My Sunshine,” replaced the script of desperation. The two watchers in the next room sat entranced, the old man slept, and the bright-sweatered caretaker read about skin cleansing and make-up tips.
I was surrounded by patience, but I didn't take the hint.
I sat for an hour and stewed. Surely they should be finishing up and coming to tell me my car was ready. I might never find out how the melodramatic kidnapping on the TV turned out, thank goodness.
Just then I remembered that when I’d checked in, I had neglected to mention the replacement hub cap I ordered by phone the previous month. I gathered my books, pad, jacket and purse and went in search of Bob, the service technician who checked me in an hour earlier.
I found him in a room with three other service techs, all working busily at desks spaced around the rectangular area. His desk was at the end of the room and feeling impatient I didn’t wait for him to look up from his work, but blurted out something about ordering a hub cap a month ago. Bob looked up at me briefly, blue eyes considering, then down again at the stack of papers he was going through.
“No problem,” he said in a cheerfully distracted way, still thumbing through the papers, “I can go down for it and pop it on for you.”
Looking about while he finished what he was doing, I saw my car pull up outside the window, and pointed it out to Bob. He got up and left the room. I waited, still standing in front of his desk, vastly relieved to be almost free.
After a few minutes, another service tech asked if I was being helped. I answered in the affirmative. Several more minutes and the tech at the desk next to Bob’s made a good natured comment about how the sun was going to peek out any minute now from behind the clouds, outside the large wall of windows. I was feeling better now that I was almost out of there and I responded in kind. We had a conversation about the beauty of the fall weather this year, the abundant rain of last summer and the good weather predicted for the upcoming week. Then we fell silent and I continued to wait, surrounded by a general atmosphere of conviviality. I stood and looked around as if interested in the sales displays posted around the room.
Bob returned, escorted me to the payment desk and left once again. I paid the bill, told the woman I would wait at my car for Bob and the hub cap. I was so ready to leave.
Out at the car, I threw my jacket, books, pad and purse on the passenger seat, heaved a relieved breath and got into the car to wait. Any minute now, I thought. I rolled my window down to let in the air and breathed deeply, feeling glad to be almost on my way, my mind already on all the many other things I wanted to get done that day.
Bob appeared shortly thereafter walking up to the open window.
“I’m sorry but they’ll have to put in another order for the hubcap. Some kind of mix-up,” he said.
Disappointed, I sighed, “Uh, OK. Will you do that?”
“They are on it.” He gave my car door a pat as if sending me on my way, then glanced over at my wind shield, “Say, did you know that you’re thirty days overdue for an inspection sticker? You can’t drive the car like that. We can take care of that now if you’d like.”
My head drooped till my forehead rested upon the edge of the steering wheel. I began to bang it slowly and methodically.
“Mam? Are you alright?”
Bang. “Just give me a moment Bob.” Bang. Sigh. I looked up at the young, concerned face peering in through the car window. “OK Bob,” Deep sigh. “I’ll wait.”
Our walk is a delightful morning ritual for the dogs and for myself. They get to catch up on all the nightly news by sniffing every leaf and blade of grass, and I get to listen to what Mother Nature has to day about the new day. This morning, she said, “You might want to get back inside where it’s warm. It’s cold and wet out here.”
Not that I mind cold and wet so much. It is par for the course in Kansas in the Fall, and it is Fall. Despite the fact that the solstice is still weeks away, the leaves are all green, and we’re due for summer-like temperatures later in the week. Today I snuggled into a long-sleeved sweater and layered on a quilted vest on top. That makes it officially Fall, at least in my heart.
You might have guessed that I love Fall. Fall is filled with pumpkins, cornstalks, and colorful mums. The trees get dressed up in reds, golds and russet orange. A freshening wind blows surrounds us in a blizzard of fluttering leaves. Cooling temperatures speak of picking apples and making warm, cinnamon-filled apple crisp, stirring up hearty chilis and soul-satisfying stews.
My birthday sneaks in there along about the start of October, shared by my son-in-law, with joint celebration. Then Halloween arrives after several months of anticipation during which our grandchildren vacillate back and forth between delightful possibilities.
“Mima,” says Eden, dark brown eyes framed with long, black eyelashes, serious in his cherubic face. “Should I be a dinosaur or a transformer?”
After deep consideration I say, ”I don’t know, which would you like to be?”
His face lights up in a grin. “How 'bout I be both?”
The big night arrives and the grandchildren are beside themselves with excitement about their costumes. Their imaginations are in overdrive as they get to be anyone they want for one special evening. Then the big event, trick-or-treating. Racing in an excited pack from house to house. They run to ring the doorbell, sing out a happy shout of, “Trick or treat!” and hold out their bags in expectation of candy. Smiling neighbors answer the summons and exclaim over the princesses, ghosties and dino-transformers at their door.
As if all that weren’t enough to make the Fall season glorious, Thanksgiving makes its abundant entrance. Family and friends gather to share the giving of thanks, loving companionship, humorous banter, games and way too much food. Roast turkey, sweet squash, buttery mashed potatoes holding a pool of gravy redolent with sage, crisp topped stuffing, ruby red cranberry sauce and the best for last, pie. Oh my! Pumpkin, chocolate cream, mince, lemon meringue, pecan chocolate chip, all topped with mountains of whipped cream.
OK, I might have gotten a little carried away with my culinary memories of Thanksgiving largesse. It’s all part of the mystique of Fall in my heart… and tastebuds. That’s OK, because this year, Fall of 2020, it’s more important than ever to pay attention to all that brings joy into our hearts, allowing ourselves to relax into the comforts of ritual and Fall celebration.
I’m not complaining mind you, well, not much anyway. Just painting the picture, because I feel great…now. And I’m going to tell myself that as often as I need to throughout the day today, until I take my sleep deprived body to bed tonight.
I haven’t slept well the last couple of nights. Maybe it’s because there’s a lot of disturbing stuff going on the world. Maybe it’s because menopause plays havoc with the hormones. Whatever the reason, sleep deprivation usually sets me up for low energy, irritable days. At least until this morning, because this morning I remembered that I have a choice about how I want to feel.
We all have that choice.
It may come as no surprise to you when I say that how we feel physically and how we feel emotionally are not the same. The physical body and the energetic emotional body are two separate entities, parts of the whole. They do affect each other, oh, how they affect each other, for better or for worse. But we can choose to make it for the better.
When I was growing up my mother listened to a news broadcaster who ended each morning program saying, “Make it a good day.” Such good advice and I’m taking it to heart. As I sit here on my porch typing away, I choose to make today a good day.
I’m focusing on the blue sky behind the storm clouds. I’m letting go of trying to fix myself or anyone else for today. I’m surrendering my egoic desire to agonize over things and try to control it all. I’m surrendering it all to God and accepting peace.
This is how. First, I remembered I have a choice and I made the commitment to myself to feel great. Then I tapped it in using Faster EFT and the simple words, “I surrender it all to God and I feel great.” By the end of a few rounds of tapping I felt better.
Afterwards, I looked through the porch screens at the stormy sky outside, and saw the grey clouds now wispy at the edges with blue sky peeking through from behind, even as thunder still grumbled in the distance. It was a lovely metaphor for how I was feeling inside. I could feel light-filled blue sky appearing within, as the storm clouds of grumpiness parted and wisped away.
I sat and patted myself on the back as I enjoyed the bits of blue sky outside and the fact that I was feeling pretty good. As I continued to gaze at the sky, the wind picked up, darker clouds rolled in and it wasn’t long before the storm outside my porch came back with a vengeance, wind blasting, rain pelting, thunder roaring.
Huh, so much for my metaphor. Or, to carry the metaphor a little farther, perhaps my resolve to feel good would be challenged and I’d have to make the choice to surrender and feel great all over again. It does work that way. Often when we choose to make a change our resolve is tested. It is as if our soul self says, “Get through this and you’ll really know you’ve changed.” It’s all part of the growth process. Awareness, change, test, awareness, change, test and so on.
This morning’s stormy weather taught me that we can choose to feel good, even great, despite what our habitual responses have been in the past. We can choose to change. Why not give it a try the next time storm clouds threaten your emotional horizon? And if the storm clouds come back again? Repeat your resolve and make a choice for the better, as often as you need to.
As a teenager, belonging was the driving force of my life. When I was fourteen (a loooong time ago,) just about to enter high school, I longed with all my heart to be part of what I considered the ‘in crowd.’ You know, the popular ones, the self-confident kids everybody wanted to be friends with. Then I changed schools and my priorities shifted. In my new school I just wanted to make some friends. So, I joined the chorus. From there I joined the big, seasonal musical productions run jointly by two schools and met a whole group of new friends. There I found the belonging that I’d searched for.
At least until I didn’t. Huh?
I never quite belonged enough to feel secure. I always needed more, more reassurance, more acceptance, more belonging. I was astonished when one day I heard someone who hung on the outskirts of our group, mention something about us being the ‘in group.’ What?! I was part of the ‘in group?’ Then how come I didn’t feel confident and popular and totally accepted? Surely those ‘in group’ kids felt that way all the time. Right?
Then it was time to move on to college. There, I joined a small singing group of women with whom I became good friends.
Hey, it worked the first time, sort of…
Fast forward through marriage, motherhood, remarriage, many moves and many lifetimes and I joined another singing group. Another group of friends, spiritually oriented this time. Yet, somehow, I was still searching for belonging.
Why wasn’t I finding what I was looking for? Could it be that I was looking in the wrong place?
“You’re imperfect, and you’re wired for struggle but you are worthy of love and belonging.”
Could it be that an enduring sense of belonging can’t be found outside oneself? Perhaps it can only be found within.
“When you get to a place where you understand that love and belonging, your worthiness, is a birthright and not something you have to earn, anything is possible.”
I turned my eyes inward and searched there for belonging. I encountered all those dark places, the parts of myself that felt unacceptable. The aspects that I didn’t like about myself and still am not overly fond of. Yet, I’ve declared an armistice with those bits and pieces in favor of overall peace. Oddly enough, the more I am able to accept those parts of myself, the less I seem to need to express them. Go figure.
So, where does that leave us? It brings us back to understanding the need for belonging. Understanding that it is an inner sense of belonging that fills the need more completely than the ephemeral acceptance of others. It is the absolute acceptance of God that feeds the starving.
When I think to myself, “I belong to God,” my heart feels full. And that is enough. From that place I am able to do as St. Francis of Assisi recommended and offer to others what I desire for myself. As I offer deep acceptance to others, I too am accepted. I belong, because I belong to God.
Peace Prayer of Saint Francis
Lord, make me an instrument of your peace:
where there is hatred, let me sow love;
where there is injury, pardon;
where there is doubt, faith;
where there is despair, hope;
where there is darkness, light;
where there is sadness, joy
O divine Master, grant that I may not so much seek
to be consoled as to console,
to be understood as to understand,
to be loved as to love.
For it is in giving that we receive,
it is in pardoning that we are pardoned,
and it is in dying that we are born to eternal life.
-Attributed to St. Francis of Assisi
What this means for the current state of our world is that its healing begins within each of us. For as we grow into the willingness to accept all aspects of ourselves, even those parts that feel unacceptable, then we know that we belong. When we know we belong, we can do no less than offer acceptance and belonging to others, because we all belong to God.
*Brene Brown is a research professor at the University of Texas and She has spent the past two decades studying courage, vulnerability, shame, and empathy and is the author of five #1 New York Times bestsellers based upon her research.
But before I get further into that, let’s get to the point of this blog. Yes, this blog does have a point, and that is, that I’ve realized there are two ways I’ve gotten things done over the years.
The first was to decide what I wanted to do, make a plan and then rush through it to completion. I was motivated by fear, most particularly the fear of not enough. Not enough time, not enough money, not enough energy, not enough ability to create whatever it was the way I really wanted it. The result being that I often settled for “good enough” in what I created.
The second way was to decide what I wanted to do and carefully do my homework, researching and planning. This process was akin to priming the pump. Once the pump was primed, I released my hold on the process and allowed the project to move at its own speed, unfolding one step at a time. A little bit of guidance received here, a synchronicity there and the end result often looked very different from the original plan. Yet I was delighted with the outcome everytime.
The two processes are not unlike traveling on a river in a boat. You can paddle furiously along, not understanding the current that carries you, believing you won’t move unless you work hard, and exhaust yourself with your efforts. You arrive at your destination tired and anxious. You don’t appreciate the journey or enjoy the process. Or, you can trust that you will be supported, put the paddle away and allow yourself to be carried along on the current. You arrive energized and calm. You enjoyed your journey and the process of it. Either way you get to where you are going. The experience however, is very different.
In the past, I held several office jobs in which I remember taking the first approach. I felt pressed for time, worried that I wasn’t doing a good enough job. I couldn’t stop paddling furiously, the results were predictably mediocre, though I didn’t understand why at the time. My response was to paddle harder and harder until finally I was exhausted and quit.
Recently however, given a project to do, I’ve taken the second approach and it’s worked a whole lot better for me. The results not surprisingly, have been successful.
The difference is working from fear and lack of trust or working from love and trust. So simple, and so profound in its implications.
Anyway, I’m trying to figure out what to do with five or six of those tentacular cable things. I think they’re breeding back there behind my TV. Worst are the baby ones. They haven’t grown long enough, so there are enormous plugs to be dealt with half-way to the wall outlet. Grrr…
OK, enough ranting. I’m breathing deeply and relaxing now. I’m approaching this part of the basement project one step at a time, priming the pump with research and planning, allowing space for intuitive leaps of guidance, taking the next step that feels right, then some more research and planning, a synchronicity or two, and taking the next step after that. Allowing the process to unfold.
I’m right in the middle of it and even with all my planning, I can’t see what the outcome will look like because I don’t know where the current will carry me. I’m going to trust in the process and take my time. Sooner or later I will be successful, and my TV set-up will be neat, take up minimal floor space, and blend in with the décor, because I'm going to allow that to happen. That’s how I roll nowadays. 😉
What does it feel like physically when your heart is full? For me it feels expansive in my chest, in the area around my heart and lungs. I want to breathe deeper and deeper, like I want to take in ever more of what feels so good. Sometimes I’ll experience the sharp, warm sensation of the blood vessels in the skin over my heart suddenly expanding and more blood pouring through.
It happened like that recently…
I invoked heart coherence first thing in the morning right after waking. I lay still in my bed, hands over my heart and just breathed, visualizing the breath going in and out of my heart. Inwardly I chanted, “Thank you. Thank you. Thank you.” After a few minutes, even though I woke feeling a bit grumpy, I felt a shift, and a sense of gratitude welled up from within. My breaths got deeper and I felt appreciation for the new day.
Then, I was up and out of bed, tossing on a bathrobe and wandering out to the kitchen to make some cocoa. Because the weather was beautiful, I took my cocoa out to sit on the patio in my back yard. Holding the steaming cup in my hands, sipping frothy, cinnamon topped, cocoa deliciousness, I gazed out over the bright blanket of grass and the multi-hued greens of the surrounding canopy of leafy oaks and cedars. The sky hovered overhead, turquoise blue. The hummingbirds buzzed back and forth at the feeder just to my right. The cardinals and their offspring alighted on the ground beneath the suet feeder, plucking up a seed and flitting off into the branches of the juniper tree, to consume their breakfast. A noisy family of blue jays chased each other around the spreading branches of the oak tree before me, and a single bright yellow gold finch sang a lilting melody.
My heart filled with appreciation almost sharp in sensation, and I felt such gratitude for the perfection of the moment. My heart felt full.
Sometimes it happens like that, a perfect moment. It might be triggered by something as simple as seeing someone you love, or hearing a child’s delighted laughter. Often though, it is something that must be intended, the way you intend to fill your stomach with a nourishing meal.
Our bodies hunger for food and we feel it in our grumbling bellies. Our hearts hunger for nourishment as well. Only what nourishes our hearts is love and all its attendant feelings.
One of the gifts of nourishing your heart by intending appreciation and gratitude, is that the moments that might seem less than perfect can transform and become perfect even in their imperfection.
Children are often our best teachers, and my grandchildren are no exception. I find it is the chaotic moments, the times when I haven’t slept well the night before and my patience level is not what I might wish. The times when the house is a mess, toys scattered everywhere, when the kitchen is filled with the detritus of multiple meals and snacks. The times when the children pick up on my emotional state and the boys play wildly, crashing and throwing toys around. The times when their sister is caught in a loop of worry over something and refuses to be distracted. Those are the times my thoughts may spiral into my own loop of negativity.
Perhaps then, it is with divine intervention or maybe just plain desperation that I will realize that I have a choice. I can take a deep breath, and then another. I can choose to focus on all that I am grateful for, grateful for these beautiful children, doing what kids do. I can invoke a feeling of appreciation as I focus on all that is right in this present moment. There is so much to feel grateful for. Then my heart expands, filling with the love I feel for my precious gran’s. The moment transforms. It is perfect, even in all its chaos.
It seems that chaos is a regular part of all our lives right now. With so much chaos going on, and worry over what the future holds for our country and the world, it is more important than ever to remember to nourish our hearts. Nourish our hearts by focusing our thoughts on all that we appreciate in our daily lives. There is so much to feel grateful for if we will just shift our attention.
We can feed our hearts with nourishing feelings even as we feed our bodies with nourishing foods. You don’t have to wait for that perfect moment to allow your heart to feel full. You can intend it any time you like. Most people eat a good meal once, twice, three or more times a day. Our hearts need daily feeding too. The reward is a heart that’s filled with perfect moments, even those that didn’t start out that way.
That’s when a small, potentially biting fly appeared and buzzed around my leg. I could have trapped it between my hand and my leg and killed it. I thought about doing so for a millisecond. Instead I waved it away. It dawned on me then, that tiny decision was a choice between love and fear. If I had been less aligned, I might easily have taken my negative feelings out on the hapless fly. I had done so out of irritation in the past. But this morning I pulled myself into positivity. I was feeling relaxed and appreciative of my yard and the morning by then, and so I chose to allow that fly to buzz on its way.
Every day in our lives is composed entirely of small and large choices. Every second of the day we are making choices from a place of fear or a place of love. It’s no wonder that Spirit is interested in the tiny details of our lives. Every one of those details involves the foundational choice between love or fear. Every detail asks, Will you choose to act from love or from fear?
The choice between love and fear is not a new idea. Yet understanding that our days are composed of countless choices between love and fear takes this wisdom to a deeper level. Your every thought is a choice.
For example, I walk through the kitchen intent upon some project or other. My husband is sitting at the kitchen counter chuckling over something he is reading. He wants to share it with me. If I am out of alignment my initial reaction is often irritation at being held up. Sigh… Does the irritation feel good to me? No. Why is irritation my kneejerk response? I’m focused and don’t want to be interrupted in what I’m doing. What am I afraid of? I’m afraid I don’t have enough energy and/or time and/or support to do all I want to do. What’s the loving response? Stop for a few moments and enjoy a positive interaction with my husband, knowing that Spirit has my back. I can believe that I have everything I need to do what I want to do.
My day is filled with small, seemingly unimportant decisions like this one. Yet, when I make the choice to respond with irritation or negativity, not only do I miss an opportunity for a loving and enjoyable interaction, I choose to believe in lack, I choose to believe that I am not supported by Spirit. It is a much bigger decision than I might have thought, because one choice based in fear ripples outward, creating more choices based in fear, and more and more.
Fortunately, the same is true the other way around. If, given this same situation, I make the conscious choice to know that Spirit is supporting me in all I want to accomplish, I can relax and enjoy a moment of pleasantness with my husband. The enjoyable experience of that choice ripples outward and I am more likely to make subsequent choices during my day from a place of love and trust.
I do understand that a person could be paralyzed if they felt they had to analyze every tiny choice made throughout the day. Am I blowing my nose now because I’m afraid I’m going to sneeze and make a scene during this meeting or because I’m lovingly taking care of my body? There is such a thing as overanalyzing. Just blow your nose already.
Still, assuming what we want is to make our choices from a place of love, how do we do that without getting all mental and driving ourselves crazy over every little decision? Here are some ideas.
What do you think? Will you choose from love or from fear today? It’s worth pondering.
Spirit is interested in the details of our lives because they matter on a spiritual level.
The details of our lives gradually add up to become the whole of our lives. The seconds become minutes become hours become days become years.
Every detail contributes to our soul growth not because of what we are doing but because of how we are doing it. Are we resenting the maintenance jobs which loom before us? Do they feel like drudgery? Would we much rather be doing something else? Are we mentally elsewhere as we clean the toilet? Do we keep putting off cleaning the scuff marks on the wall, changing out the worn and dirty vent covers, fixing that window? Or, do we appreciate and love the details of our lives? Do we make a prayer of vacuuming, painting, washing windows, ironing or doing the dishes? Do we love and appreciate what we are doing as we are doing it?
Why is this so important that we do this?
It can be challenging to remember this in the course of everyday life. Sometimes you just want to get a job done and get it over with so you can get on to what you want to be doing. But if you can remember to slow down and set your intention to make whatever you do spiritual practice, focus your attention into the present moment and evoke flow, it makes all the difference. You move from one plane of existence into a higher plane.
And you really feel it when you do. The job you are doing starts speaking to you (metaphorically speaking). Or perhaps it is Spirit or your Higher Self. Whoever it is that is communicating, you attune to what you are doing, you know what to do and how to get it done. You know the next step and then the next step after that. You are flowing in the current of energy which you evoked through your intention.
In fact, you are attuning and aligning with your inner self through the medium of the job that you are doing. So, you see how important this particular job is, this particular detail of your life. What you do becomes a pathway to connection and alignment with your Higher Self, with Spirit and with God.
How do we do this? We do this by setting our intention energetically before we take any action.
Let’s take cleaning as an example of a daily maintenance job, a detail of our lives. A job that is often put off or avoided or slogged through just to get it done, at least in my house.
Here are some ideas for approaching this in another way.
You might have noticed there is a theme here. Ask Spirit, invite Spirit, intentionally partner with Spirit as you do what you do. As you intend this and take action, you become the hands of Spirit in our world, channeling the energy of love.
The way this plays out in our individual lives is that we are more prone to fearful or angry thoughts, and the stress and anxiety that creates, than we might have been otherwise. In the general atmosphere of fear our survival instincts are on alert, looking for the danger. If there is no immediate, life-threatening danger the subconscious will choose something that is going on in our lives to focus the fear on and create a story about it to explain our feelings. The result is that we’ll feel more fearful, angry or stressed about that particular thing than we might have otherwise.
In my life, the stress shows up in various ways. Sometimes, I’ll stress about all I need to get done and feel so tired and grumpy I don’t want to do anything but lie on the couch and escape into a good book. The book works for a day, it feels like a relief. But as soon as I stop reading, the anxiety-provoking thoughts return. I feel more stressed because I took the day off and I didn’t get done what I wanted to get done. Other times, I am on overdrive and feeling like I have to get everything on my list done this minute. I plan and organize down to the last detail, and I feel crabby about sticking to that schedule because I’m forcing myself against my natural flow of energy. Sometimes, I just feel fearful or angry about something that feels very real to me, but when I look at it rationally, I realize that I’m making a mountain out of a molehill.
There has to be a better way.
I watched a Bashar video yesterday in which he spoke about staying within the eye of the storm and allowing the storm of 2020 to rage all around us without getting caught up in it.
It got me thinking, what if I stay within the eye of the storm? How would I do that?
The eye of the storm is a state of being. We are living in trust and love, knowing that everything that happens, happens for a reason. We trust that everything is working out for our highest and best. When we are caught up in the winds of the storm we are in a state of doing, trying to fix, control and force things to be the way we think they should be.
So, it comes down to trust. Trusting God/Spirit/Higher Self and trusting in our inner guidance. The more we trust, the more easily we rest within the eye of the storm. The more we trust, the better we maintain our inner balance, the more easily we can set our inner radio dial to the God/Higher Self channel.
When we do that, we are able to trust what in the past we might have been trying to control or force or fix or bury. When we trust we turn it all over to God, to our Higher Selves.
Creating a Better Way
Creating is choosing what we want, then following our inner guidance and allowing it to blossom in our lives. Creation feels like taking an ego-step back, releasing the need to control and force things to happen. Rather, it is setting one’s intent and letting go of the how of the creation.
In order to be able to create in our lives we have to show up fully, we have to be in balance and alignment. Otherwise the mind is haring off into past or future worries, planning and fixing, and we are not fully present. When we show up fully, we are in trust. Trusting what is. Trusting that all is exactly what we need in this moment. Trusting that the energy is guiding us to exactly what we need to be doing right now. Trusting that what needs to get done, will get done, in exactly the way it is needed. Trusting that we are cared for and guided.
Here’s What We Can Do
We can understand that the energetic milieu in which we are immersed at this time is full of fear, swirling around us like a hurricane. That doesn’t mean we have to live in fear. We can choose to stand within the eye of the storm. Just being aware that we may be affected by the general atmosphere of fear, supports us to know that we have a choice.
It’s good to remember that we have a choice if we find ourselves falling down the well of stress, anxiety, fear or anger. We can remember that the fear that feels like ours may not all belong to us. We can remember too that just because we think a thought doesn’t make it true. We do have a choice about the thoughts we think and how we respond to what’s happening in our lives.
We can choose to trust. We can choose to be the conscious creator of our everyday life. We can choose the positive thought. We can choose to use the energetic tools we have to bring ourselves into balance and alignment. As we do so we step out of the hurricane and into the eye of the storm.
Here's what I’m doing to support myself, perhaps it will support you too.
Life is full of spiritual lessons. Some feel good, some not so good. All support us to grow. This blog is about my life lessons. Perhaps you'll find yourself within these stories.