The sun is down now and there’s a purply-blue hue to the atmosphere. I’m on the terrace writing and feeling pretty at home I must say. Who knows, maybe this is a premonition; some dejá vue and in the future I will spend my life in the sun writing?
What a dream that would be?
Today started before the sun came up and before the ‘tring-a-ling’ of my mobile’s alarm.
I sat on the terrace for a while contemplating what to do with the day whilst in the distance the ‘whoooosh’ and ‘Schweeeee’ sounds of the swell of the sea and the waves sweeping as the tide came in, seemed particularly potent; a powerful draw, calling me to venture out.
Walking in Sunrise
So, as many still slept, including the sun, I ventured out to walk the length of the beach and explore a little.
Surprisingly, though it was only about 7.30am, one or two people were around and one woman had clearly been in the sea for some time already as she was walking back to her apartment wet and panting.
The walk was really quite invigorating. It’s hard work walking on shifting pebbles, great for the thighs and the tummy… so early morning exercise is ticked off the list.
I walked and walked on a journey that took me up a steep path that eventually led me above the sea and round the curve of the bay to give a wonderful panoramic view of the bay. A complete and perfect, chalky ‘C’ shape…kissed by a greyish blue swell.
Marvels and wonders
I marvelled at how lovely it all was and wondered at the sights this bay must have seen and the experiences it observed unchanging over the centuries.
Ancient Nubians fishing and swimming & building; the descent of Roman galleons invading the bay, that these very same cliffs must have taken in; the loss of many Ancient Greek sandals from lovers and friends; the remnants of shrapnel, devastation from two world wars; mementos, which now lay buried deep among the pebbles and the seaweed and the moss on the beach;
Sand & Pebbles
My head hurt with the thought that there were millions, probably billions or trillions of pebbles and grains of sand on this one beach alone, and this was one beach on the island of Cyprus and Cyprus is one island, one tiny land mass that has many beaches, so how many grains of sand and how many pebbles are there across the planet?
One pebble, one grain of sand on its own cannot make up a beach,everypebble and grain contributes to the creation of the beach.
All of it, I came to realise meant that we are but fleeting experiences for our planet. We are a mere nanosecond on the timeline of evolution so, is anything we experience REALLY so important that we need to feel stressed and unhappy about it?
When we realise we have all the time in the world, but no time at all in the experience ofthe world then surely we need to ‘get on with it,’ live every moment and be grateful for everything?
In the same way that we are inconsequential, we are too, like the pebble and the singular grain of sand, are a part of everything; a part ofthe ‘beach.’
Without each ‘one’ next to another ‘one’ there can be no beach, no ‘whole’ and in that regard we are so darned fortunate to be here; a part of everything, yet separate and whole in our ‘Oneness.’
I have just arrived back at the apartment.
Last in the restaurant; I cheekily stayed to use their WIFI and post Sunday and Monday’s blog posts. They didn’t seem to mind.
Do you get the feeling that there’s a change afoot?
Doom & Gloom
Our destruction of our planet, the near extinction of many of the world’s species, Polar Ice-Caps melting, GMO crops & foods, pesticides, annihilating our Bee population, Fracking and all the other heartless, big-business practises; taxation, taxation, taxation, our increasing lack of freedom and civil liberty, can make it seem as though we are completely enmeshed in the ‘Big Brother’ era and the ‘Matrix’ seems inescapable.
We are suspicious of and hateful towards anything and anyone that isn’t a member of our ‘tribe,’ the ones that do not wear the same markings we do, ‘The other,’ or ‘Them,’ ‘Them’ who are taking our homes, our jobs, dating our children and lowering our moral standards. ‘They’ who are ‘strange’ and ‘different’ and just ‘not like us.’
Paranoia and fear are high. In such times…we tend to forget ‘the ties that bind’ and focus on factors that divide.
Yet, at the same time can’t you feel it? There’s a spiritual awakening taking place. More and more of us are waking up, searching for and finding the truth beyond the veil of mis-representations and omissions that have kept us pretty blind to what is really important on this journey.
In just twenty years I have seen a greater acceptance of a more spiritual language and it’s seeping into the language of the everyday. When my spiritual journey started and I mentioned the word ‘soul.’ I would be looked on quizzically, sometimes called a ‘weirdo.
A new Language
Yoga, Meditation, Vegetarianism, Vegan lifestyles, Conservation and the growth membership of organisations calling for Unity, (some of which have been working hard so for several decades, to only NOW be heard) caring for our planet and the idea that perhaps it IS possible to live in harmony with the other creatures that inhabit this earth. Were all ideas that we sneered at a decade or so ago, but happily the awakening is picking up pace and more and more of us are getting it – allowing the thought that “There’s gotta be more than this!”and it is a thought that is gathering pace.
Divide and conquer
Let’s face it, there are two main ideals we experience which keep us passive and ‘running’ around the hamster wheel of life.
We are assaulted by a perpetual and unrelenting media diet of unachievable goals to meet with regard to our bodies, ambitions, ideals and our material wealth else we’re deemed failures and secondly, we are told to compete with one another is the norm and this in turn feeds the notion that everyone outside of our ‘tribe’ is somehow a threat…if we let them get a ‘bigger slice of the pie.’ there’ll be less for ‘US’ to go around!
The only thing that thoughts like that create is a situation that keeps us separated from the very thing(s) we’re trying to draw into our lives… slackening the ties that bind.
‘If you’re not with us you’re ‘against us’
Race, culture, religion, gender, orientation, height, the sports team you support, neighbourhood you live in , car you drive, size of home, clothes you wear, size of TV screen, title at work are all labels we use. We’re sent a message which says that these titles and roles define who we are. We are then handed a set of ideals and rules that ‘our tribe’ says are necessary for survival, for inclusion, for acceptance and so then cloak ourselves in these rules and titles feeling superior and more entitled than the next person because of them.
More alike than not
I know I’m not speaking here about anything you’re not already aware of, however the influence is so subtle, so persistent that at times it is barely noticeable. It runs deep, taking on a myriad of forms, so at times we forget that it is exactly these energies that are influencing us and shaping our minds, particularly those of our children. They become consumed with consuming, infatuated by popularity and seduced by Social Media.
To keep us distracted…to keep us sedated, so we disregard our natural capacity for love, so we continue to feel ‘less than,’ so we continue to ‘buy’ our self-approval, self-love and the love and approval of everyone else.
To no avail.
Bake your own pie
Let’s say one day I wake up in a great mood and decide to bake a blueberry pie. I have a whole range of ingredients in my cupboards and in my fruit bowls, but I know I’m going to need blueberries; butter and flour to create the perfect pastry base; I have the salt and splash of milk needed to give it just a hint of richness; I know exactly what ingredients I need and exactly how to put it together. So these are the ingredients I choose and combine to make the perfect blueberry pie.
The ingredients that are in harmony with and required for my recipe.
…It’s your kitchen, your pie, right here…now!
Those other ingredients in the cupboard are not right for my pie, but I don’t spend my time worrying about how they taste, or what they’re doing on the larder shelf, nor do I choose to exclude these ingredients from the cupboard and the kitchen altogether.
I do not focus on them as they languish on the larder shelves, I don’t worry that I must throw the lot out because I don’t need them for the pie I’m baking now. I focus on baking my pie, in my kitchen, right here, right now. It doesn’t matter that these ingredients exist.
They’ll only end up in my pie if I put them in!
If I focus on them instead of concentrating on the pie I’m baking, then the likelihood is that I’ll end up burning my pie…all that effort wasted, no enjoyment, no delicious pie and as an end result I won’t get the satisfaction of eating something wonderful that I created.
“‘Tis the season to be jolly”
When I recall the harrowing scenes of ‘Black Friday,’ and as this festive season gathers pace, I’d like for us to consider what it is that this season is really about?
It’s said it’s the “season of good will to all (wo)men.”
So this Festive Fortnight focus on the ‘ties that bind.’ Remember we are:
One human family
In my life I have learnt that our differences are wonderful and we really should celebrate them; that at the core we are more alike than different and that’s where our beauty resides. Instead of making this festive season one of competition and ‘feeling hard done to’ because you didn’t get the latest whatever…
Instead of rushing into yet another frenzied commercial scrum headlong into ‘sales’ to buy yet more things you do not need coz ‘that’s the thing to do isn’t it?’ why not take a moment.
Share a thought for someone who’s alone this holiday season and say ‘hello,’ even better spend half an hour or so. What could it hurt?
Instead of rushing to buy yet more NEW, what do you have that you could generously give to others less fortunate, or recycle so others can get some joy from items that you no longer want or use?
Th next time you meet or hear of someone who is making choices that are in contrast to yours try instead of criticising remember to focus on baking your own pie and accept that they are baking their own! It doesn’t have to have the same flavour as yours.
When we accept that we are millions of bakers, in our own kitchens, baking pies at the same time, choosing our own flavours and creating THE most wonderful aromas, when we get that we’re all perfectly imperfect cooks those realisations are the ones that will finally create ‘The ties that bind.’
I literally fell apart. I was in bits…I crashed to the floor into a million shiny pieces and had no idea how to glue myself back together.
“Things fall apart” is a book by Chinua Achebe and concerns the issues face by a controlling, dominant man who has a strict idea of what it means to be a man. The reality is he has no control over anything save his own words and actions. The lesson I took from that is that in life one has to yield…When we are rigid and insist we know it all life more than often throws you a curve ball just as a reminder. The only thing you can do in that instance is decide:
‘WHO’ do I choose to be in response to this event/situation, who am I going to be right now?’
I am undone…
I had been given some devastating news, news which sent me into a tailspin, news which changed what I knew as truth and turned it upside down. It kicked me HARD in the gut. I couldn’t breathe, I couldn’t DO anything. I knew this could be the undoing of me and I had no idea how to hold myself together.
I was numb…
I felt if I moved or thought, or anything I would neverbe able to recover myself and after all the things I’ve had to pick myself up from this was the one that would be the undoing of me.
I did nothing…Literally nothing.
Then the stillness came
So I was just still…No blinking, I don’t recall any breathing (though there must have been some as I’m still here) I clenched and held on tight. There were no tears, no noise, no emotion, no thought whatsoever and I was terrified. I have never been in a space of absolutely no reaction whatsoever before, but I knew there was nothing else.
My mind and body took over.
For nearly three hours I was like this…fortunately I had received the devastating news at precisely 3.25am (funny how you recall minute detail in a crisis) It’s as if everything becomes heightened and you’re sharper in a weird, floaty, other-worldy kind of way.
At 6.15am my mind kicked in and reminded me from somewhere in my subconscious that I have day two of a fantastic Coaching Training course to attend and I needed to DO SOMETHING!
I don’t really recall getting ready, I must have drifted in and out of…not consciousness, but more an awareness of reality as my next memory was walking into the city centre to the hotel where the event was being held. As I walked I heard a voice inside, a voice which obviously had some fight in her… a determined self-preservation saying…
‘Come on! don’t break, Step towards your life…you have a life to live!’
It was like a mantra and propelled me towards the hotel. I was still holding on all the way, the tension was there. Before I knew it I was at the entrance and jolted back into reality. When I saw my new-found friends from the programme a part of me felt as if it had come back to itself. I did the usual exchanging of pleasantries and began to feel a little better.
But I was still holding…
The pressure was building, but if there’s one thing I am good at it’s pushing those feelings down and not letting them control me…I’ve had a lot of practise when it comes to picking myself up and getting on with it! It’s a challenging path…It’s a lonely one, there have been times when I really didn’t think I could make it one more day, times when I have been spent and had no idea how or where to find the courage and strength to do what I had to…
I have been deep, but usually there’s no-one there and so I learnt to ‘get on with it,’ and break down in private. Little did I know the universe would take me even deeper and expose me. My worst night mare come true.
There was a huge knot in my gut…and a constriction of my throat. I knew It would be impossible for me to eat.
Vesuvius! – Explode…Expose…Exhale
The room was warm.
It got warmer and warmer, the facilitator was explaining the first task. My mind was grateful. Good I get to practise my coaching and get some feedback. And then it happened. The dam broke!
Overwhelm followed. The feelings I had repressed all morning, the control I’d wrestled to keep a hold of weakened…I weakened and the flood commenced.
I held my nose, I gritted my teeth, I clenched my fists and nothing was able to get me back to my equilibrium. I had not choice but to just let it out. I had to leave the room. I felt embarrassed and ashamed. I’d let myself down. I’m supposed to be able to deal with anything. I’m the ‘strong one! for god’s sake!’
The wonderful Claire, who was sitting opposite me and who was my partner in the exercise followed me outside and did…
It was just what I needed her to do…
In that moment I gave in…
I surrendered to the agony and the pain and the loss and when all I could do was sob and mourn and wail and sob some more and shake and cry, I learnt several lessons in that moment:
My/our feelings are nothing I need to feel ashamed of.
They’re mine/ours and they’re OK
They are there to guide us and they are there to support our spiritual and emotional health. It’s OK to feel… It’s OK to let the flow happen.
When I dive into my feelings…really let myself be immersed in them I come through the other side lighter and wiser and freer. There’s less tension and a greater acceptance.
When things fall apart…wail, cry, scream and then just breathe
I’m not perfect and I don’t have to be…the only person that expects that of me…IS ME!
(What the hell would perfection look like anyway?…We’re always learning always expanding). When has there been a day when we did not learn something new about ourselves or the world in general or about another?
Most importantly, I learnt that we are LOVE.
In what way can you be love today? Be it…Show it…You may just save someone’s life.
Our instinct is to reach out, to support and to love. I’ve always believed that, yet it can seem today, with all the horrible things occurring in our modern world and how often the needs of others are ignored, that that’s not the case. I have often doubted it myself, chastising myself for being believing this and being so naïve and telling myself to ‘Get real,’ or ‘Grow up.’
The only time we reject and hurt and decry and break down and slander and try to own others or keep them with us, is when we are afraid within ourselves, it’s out of a desire to maintain OUR comfort. Afraid of how we’ll be seen in comparison or afraid of the unknown because we’ve never navigate this emotional or physical territory before or else afraid we’re getting close to revealing our insecurity or our hidden thoughts about ourselves and we’ll be rejected.
Many of us are prepared to fight to the death to keep up a situation that is miserable because it’s familiar. Even if others who we profess to love, get hurt in the process. If love is showing up in this way, that’s not love.
Love is and will always be a ‘Giving’emotion. It can take no other form. If it feels any different, then some other desire or need is driving its expression
My newfound friends created a loving space for me to just be.
They did not judge me, they did not question me or quiz me. They simply let me express whatever It was I needed to in that moment. They exhibited pure acceptance and love and in so doing allowed me to love and accept myself that bit more.
The timing was uncanny: And so I had another confirmation of a long-held belief of mine:
The universe is divine wisdom.
We are a part of that wisdom
It works through and for ALL of us
Without the support I received yesterday I truly think I could honestly have been a ‘bit of a basket case!’
The universe knew that when I received my news I would need support and as I live alone it’s rather uncanny isn’t it, that I was on a training programme with exactly the kinds of people I would need to get me through the emotions I experienced.
Synchronicity…Kismet… Co-incidence. Call it what you will. We have all had such incidents in our lives. They’re evidence of the support the universe puts in place when we need it and YES that includes you!
Perhaps it’s a fleeting introduction to or meeting with someone who is doing, being, having a career or lifestyle you have dreams of, perhaps it’s someone who through your interaction creates a feeling of the support, accomplishment, love and happiness you are aching for?
‘When the student is ready the master appears!’
We are given samples, given brief glimpses of what our soul knows is right for us, so that we allow go after it and muster enough courage and self-love to step into what we know in our hearts we truly deserve.
Every moment of our lives we should feel grateful, blessed and In love.
With ourselves, our lives and (if you have a significant other) with our partners and children. If you don’t.
In this conversation I’d like us to consider how we can live, as I firmly believe we are here to live life, which is fully, completely, whole-heartedly and in Joy and NOT as drudges or in a perpetual state of tiredness making do, putting up with, accepting and OR running, running and running, to feel as if we’re going no-where; wondering ‘is this all there is?’
The dictionary defines ‘Comfort.’ as:
1. A state of physical ease and freedom from pain or constraint.
2. consolation for grief or anxiety.
3. Verb to feel less unhappy
Whereas ‘Joy’ is defined as:
1. A feeling of great pleasure and happiness.
2. Success or satisfaction
Synonyms cited are words such as; bliss delight, ecstasy, euphoria, rapture
Which do you choose?
Looking at both of these definitions, I know which one I would prefer to experience. How often though do we opt for the former state repressing and containing our joy ‘just in case,’ so we’re not too disappointed should our success/love/ambition be snatched away or worse still we fail?
On an episode of Oprah Winfrey’s ‘Super Soul Sunday,’ Dr Brené Brown discusses her *4 guideline for wholehearted living, which she says is:
‘The cultivation of Gratitude and Joy.’
– Letting go of scarcity and fear of the dark
‘When we lose our tolerance for vulnerability, Joy becomes foreboding.’
Brené continues this means: ‘
I’m not going to feel you, I’m not going to soften into this moment of joy, because I’m scared. I’m afraid it’s going to be taken away from me.’
I recognise this scenario only too well myself.
The fearful ‘What if?’
The younger version of me was a very contained person. I rarely cried. I had learnt early on to repress emotions, especially the ones which contained feelings of joy. In doing so I would never be disappointed. If I didn’t expect much than I wouldn’t suffer agony of not achieving/having my heart’s desire.
I was well practised at minimising the ‘joy’ and opted instead for the familiarity and less threatening ‘comfortable.’ Feeling joy is inherently dangerous.
These feelings are, more often than not followed by the thought that something ‘bad’ or unsavoury is just around the corner because it all feels just a little ‘TOO’ good and I know you know what I’m talking about!
Every so often we’ll do a little mental inventory of where we’re at.
Once we work our way down the tick-list and slowly realise that things are going good… not only that, things are good in all areas; work, home, parents, friends, financial etc…we begin to assume that it can’t ALL be this good and something bad is lurking just around the corner.
I’ve heard it from friends, family members and colleagues many times… ‘It won’t last…’ ‘Yeah I’m good… something’s bound to go wrong!’ and although we may say it ‘tongue in cheek’…somewhere deep down we believe it.
Without Vulnerability there can be no Joy
At this point in my life I can honestly confess to you that I am living in JOY.
It’s where everyone should living
Not a day goes by without someone telling me how wonderful I look and that is because of the joy which simply oozes out from within me. It is a better state to be in than the ‘comfortable’ state of being in which I refused to feel, to express, to be too big, to dare too greatly incase it was all snatched away and I would be left bereft.
Opening up to JOY makes you VULNERABLE
Roller-Coaster OR Merry-GO-Round?
The former choice is to choose the ‘Merry-go-Round’ of life. There’s some movement, but after a few times round you kind of get to know what’s coming up next. You’ve been here before, you can handle this, you’re armed and ready. No surprises!
The alternative is the Roller Coaster…It scares the S**t out of you, you don’t know if you’ll survive it…the intensity of it…it’s not safe, what if you fall off? So many uncertainties to counter.
But…let me tell you how wonderful it is to bite the bullet and ride that damned roller-coaster!
Yes! All the aforementioned fears are credible, but if you’ve every ridden a roller-coaster you know the thrill, the feeling of being alive that you experience. Every fibre of your being, every nerve ending, every sense is sharp and alert.
Expanded…more alert…more alive!
You feel expanded and fearful, yet strangely fearless at the same time. You’re out of control and vulnerable, stripped back and laid bare, much like the feelings you experience when making love…didn’t our dictionary offer up the synonyms ‘rapture,’ and ‘ecstasy?’
In that moment you can do nothing but surrender to the experience because whether in that moment you live or die is no longer in your control!
When we surrender…When we submit to vulnerability we expand
On reflection you realise you’ve expanded your being somehow. You’re somehow bigger, brighter!
You’re no longer shrunken and you can’t go back.
In fact the immediate want once you’ve jumped off a roller-caster is often to jump straight back on and experience it all over again because your realise the next time you will fully commit to FEELING the joy in what you’re doing. You realise that the first time there was still some fear and a part of you was holding back.
Redpill orblue…which will you choose?
So this week…I’m challenging you (and myself) to be vulnerable. To allow yourself to climb onto the roller-coaster and go for the ride of your life!
Expose yourself…reveal… who you are…dare to submit and if you can do this alongside cultivating feelings of gratitude I guarantee you will not regret it.
Is there something you want to do or achieve that scares you? Great! make a change and take a step towards it. You’re scared for all the reasons I stated above, but be assured stepping into it will catapult you into such a feeling of joy and gratitude and expansion you will never want to ride the merry-go-round again.
This week I realised a great fear I have had all my life…so here and now I will expose myself to you my readers, supporters and friends. If I am to support others on their journey I need to fully immerse myself in the principles I say I hold dear and so I’m allowing myself to be vulnerable and share with you my vision.
It’s one which scares me.
It feels arrogant and reminds me of all those times when asked as a child, ‘Who do you think you are?’ or as an adult accused (more than once) of thinking I am ‘better than everyone else!’
I forced myself to create a mission statement for my Personal Development and Coaching business this week and as I looked at the words I’d written in pink ink, I felt a tremendous fear rise and that familiar voice inside said ‘WHO THE HELL DO YOU THINK YOU ARE?’
So here in pink…I am declaring the me I am choose to be in this world: I declare that I aim to be:
“The Spark that ignites the power and potentiality in others.
To stand bathed in, fully immersed in my magnificence, power and abundance
and to always support others to do the same.”
Sure there are no guarantees…accessing your joy doesn’t mean life’s trials suddenly melt away, but boy are you more ready and capable of dealing with them and you’ll find you’ll come through stronger and more expanded…
Good morning again from a rather rainy Toronto & a cloudy London. Today I thought I’d consider the challenge of ‘Being you.’
There’s a quotation attributed to Coco Chanel:
‘Beauty begins the moment you decide to be yourself’
How do we obtain & maintain a sense of self when many of the messages we receive create and persist in ‘reinforcing the notion that we simply not enough?’ Firstly, let me apologise for the fact that I have been out of range for the last couple of weeks and so unable to write to you all. As I began to write this it was Saturday afternoon and one of those rare moments when I’ve slowed down a bit. You know one of those dull afternoons when you feel listless and want to stay cosy inside. The TV was on for some rare ‘chilling’ time on the sofa with my sis.
In need of a fix
An advertisement comes on, nothing unusual there…but it was an ad for a dating site. The one that followed was for slimming aids, then Febreze, then a baldness cure and as I watched I detached slightly. A thought occurred to me: How can you ever see being you as ok when the overriding message is one of ‘Not enoughness?’ That to be seen, make a difference, achieve in ANY WAY we need to be fixed?
The deficiency paradigm
These messages sent to us from the plethora of images we meet daily, hourly both pictorial and written, is one of deficiency. We are perpetually bombarded with the idea that we need fixing, that we’re just not good enough and quite frankly it made me tired!
Too single, too fat, too dirty too bald, too old, not old enough, feet too ugly, not tanned, slim, tall or rich enough…the list goes on and I’m sure you catch my drift.
Is it any wonder then that the lens through which feel able to see the world is rather foggy and a somewhat gloomy one?
I guess the strategy works?
If we’re subdued into a state of perpetual fatigue, constantly using our energies to bat away thoughts of unworthiness, inadequacy and not enoughness, how can we hope to find the mental & physical energy required to strive, become educated, to love to sing, to laugh? To find the path to being you. Fully realised, authentic and content with who you are? I imagine many of you reading this will be feeling listless, lacking enthusiasm for you life and it’s not surprising as this message overload is constant. The best way to counter this is simple. TURN IT OFF!
Take the Challege
Never mind Ice-bucket challenges! I challenge each of you reading this to turn off the Tv, eshew newspapers & magazines and social media… give your mind & spirit a negativity holiday for a week and notice how you feel & how your thoughts change. Ok for you real info junkies try a day or two! Once you shut out the bombardment you may find yourself surprised by how satisfied and grateful you begin to feel. Once you tap into these feelings of gratitude & satisfaction you begin to generate more (much as you did with the feelings, of dissatisfaction). Don’t get me wrong, this doesn’t mean ‘stuff’ won’t happen, but when it does, you’ll find your attitude to the ‘stuff’ shifting. Events will seem less disastrous and insurmountable. The satisfaction you now feel will extend itself to yourself and you’ll realise you’ve more than enough. You’re fine just as you are… right where you are.
This post recalls a day, a few months ago, when I felt a profound feeling of gratitude I thought today, this Sunday, would be an appropriate time to share the events, thoughts and feelings from that day with you, in the hope that what I write here today supports you on the rest of your journey.
I’m sure you’ve experienced a time in your life when everything just seemed to fit. Everything was easy and you experienced a sense of peace.
It may have been some form of sport you were playing and every member of the team seemed are working in synch; the action played itself out in slow motion and from player to player there was a complete connectedness. Or perhaps you were writing or creating something and you suddenly found yourself in a rhythm, a hypnotic, almost meditative flow.
It was boxing day, 26th December 2013 when even though I have read many texts and attended many seminars that explained the path to a fulfilled, happy life, I somehow suddenly ‘got it.’ The pieces of the jigsaw fell into place and I was lucky enough to understand when and how those principles had been at worked throughout my life.
Though we can learn about a concept or an idea and know a theory in principle, it is only when we ‘feel’ that principle or idea working in our life in some way, that the ‘click’ occurs and we are able to feel connected to that universal flow.
When you’re in the ‘flow’ you no longer feel as though you have several of the pieces of the jigsaw missing, that you’re not quite connecting.
All day I was overcome by two overwhelming feelings:
One was GRATITUDE and the other, well all I can describe it as, was JOY.
It was an overwhelming feeling of being happy, at peace and feeling so so lucky to have what I have.
For one day I wasn’t constantly contemplating how to create success, a new career, wealth, health etc., an ever-recurring series of thoughts, that nearly all of us are too pre-occupied with, left me and I felt a complete acceptance of where I was in that precise moment.
I began to focus solely on what I DID HAVE instead of what I felt was missing from my life.
It was an illuminating experience and one I felt I should share, as I’m convinced it is the way to create not only a better mood, but to conjure up that condition of ‘being in the flow’ and attracting more of what we want in our lives.
On that day, once I’d connected with that feeling, whatever had gone before in my life seemed redundant.
I was enveloped in what I can only describe as a shroud of thankfulness – Gratitude.
I guess I’d call it Grace.
I’ve never know what those people who are religious mean when they talk about a state of grace and I had assumed it was something that only those of us who have a faith and have a religious practise would experience, but not someone like me.
The biblical epic perception
Thanks to Hollywood and the vivid depictions of biblical events in which God/Universe speaks via a specially selected person who is invariably accompanied by dramatic weather as a backdrop. We imagine that when the divine or spirit or ‘grace,’ touches us, our experience will be just like that. Monumental. thunderbolts are followed by rolling thunder, overwhelming emotions will engulf us. We imagine too, that the heavens will open and strange and unusual events will occur.
I however, I think that spirit is much more intelligent than that.
The divine touches us in more subtle, yet profound ways… Evidence of the divine appears in events that are not loud and crashing, but soothing, subtle and gentle.
Despite the subtlety, the divine permeates your very core and infuses every cell of your being until you literally feel as though you’re glowing with gratitude, faith, hope or joy…whatever emotion it is that you’re experiencing in that moment, you simply feel it.
Inside & out.
On the day I mentioned, I woke up reasonably early, completed a full Yoga workout for an hour or so and then meditated for what seemed like another full hour.
I drifted into a meditative state quite quickly and almost immediately I felt a wave, a rush of emotion sweep over me.
A huge swell of thankfulness.
This thankful feeling grew and grew. I began to feel so very happy to be in the space I found myself in.
I was happy for the state of health I was experiencing, blessed to have my children, my mother, my father, sister and friends, but this feeling of gratitude felt strange. Was this what if I grace was present?
I say strange because I realise I was feeling grateful not just for the positives I mentioned, but this feeling was also seeping into every experience in my life, even the horrific and uncomfortable ones.
Yes, I was feeling grateful for all the horrors too!
I wanted to come out of the reverie, as it felt alien, however I struggled and settled and then surrendered to it.
The longer I stayed bathed in the feeling the clearer things became.
It all counts…
I realised that EVERYTHING I had experienced in my life had led me to that precise moment, that precise time in my life and it was THAT MOMENT that I felt grateful for. So yes, of course, everything I’d experienced, even the horrors in my life had were appreciated and thanked for bringing me to the exact point, on that day.
For the most of that day, I was floating, light and in a playful mood.
I was content.
The most unusual thing though, was that everywhere I went and everything I did seemed to throw up events or people who provided even more events and memories I could be grateful for, opportunities to whisper to myself and to the universe a huge ‘thank you.’
‘Thank you’ for who I was, where I was, whom I was with, how my life had manifest up to that point.
Importantly, I had a sense of surety that the abundant future I was trying to create was on its way to me.
It was a feeling like no other and convinced me that spirit and grace were walking with me. I gained clarity of thought that day and ideas I had previously had, became much clearer.
Gratitude is: the energy that creates our lives.
The petrol that fuels our abundance engine.
The more grateful we are for what we have and where we are, the more swiftly what we wish for comes to us. Then we are given more and more and more opportunities to say ‘Thank you.’
If we are grateful we receive more abundance, more events, gifts and people, appear in our lives, that we feel grateful for…
So we feel compelled to say:
‘Thank you, for all I have, all I am and all I will be.’
The path to fulfilling your dreams is laid with cobblestones of gratitude.
So, my message today is propel yourself closer to your desires, your hopes and your dreams through the spirit of thankfulness.
Start today…go on…just say ‘Thank you.’
When you feel more comfortable, speak out loud all the things you are thankful for, or if you’re shy of speaking out, for fear you’ll be thought of as mad, then write it all down.
You’ll find your life starting to run more smoothly, as these feelings of gratitude increase. You’ll become addicted because they feel so good, so good that you’ll want to stay bathed in them.
You’ll find you won’t be able to stop finding more and more reasons to be grateful.
The feelings that well up inside are so beautiful you’ll want to weep.
There are always opportunities for thankfulness opportunities to make a change, to see the best in a situation and learn the lesson it wants to share with you.
Remember the quote from the film ‘The Best Exotic Marigold Hotel.’
‘Everything will be all right in the end and if it’s not all right, then it’s not the end.’