I love who I am today. That wasn't always so. I have an inherent need to punish myself (eat crap, stay up too late, not take care of my body) and at times it helps me make sense out of what I am feeling. It is like pinching myself to see if I am really awake. Contrast gives me choices, and being aware of what shifts in me while encountering different experiences and people helps me decide what I enjoy. I have a history of what I used to consider tragedy and trauma that has been woven into the fabric of the joy I experience today. I don't focus on it any more and it no longer keeps me trapped in fear. I can easily parade it out if it will help someone else relate to and trust me. It serves as common ground with some of the people I encounter in my coaching and mentoring. What used to be my own addiction, rape, and sexual abuse stories have been transformed into recovery, forgiveness and true self-love. This transformation has empowered me with a capacity for empathy and love for others I never thought possible.
The journey is different for all of us, but ultimately it is about how much courage we can find and if we really want to experience the things of our soul. Bravery comes from walking through the fire and coming out with the desire to continue to thrive...despite our singed hearts. When we decide that our lives are our own to live, then and only then do we begin the process of change. Then we can step into the world asking, "what can I do to improve my life and the way I feel about myself today"?
The following poem by Oriah Mountain Dreamer is a testament to listening for your purpose....
I have heard it all my life,
A voice calling a name I recognized as my own.
Sometimes it comes as a soft-bellied whisper.
Sometimes it holds an edge of urgency.
But always it says: Wake up my love. You are walking asleep.
There's no safety in that!
Remember what you are and let this knowing
take you home to the Beloved with every breath.
Hold tenderly who you are and let a deeper knowing
colour the shape of your humanness.
There is no where to go. What you are looking for is right here.
Open the fist clenched in wanting and see what you already hold in your hand.
There is no waiting for something to happen,
no point in the future to get to.
All you have ever longed for is here in this moment, right now.
You are wearing yourself out with all this searching.
Come home and rest.
How much longer can you live like this?
Your hungry spirit is gaunt, your heart stumbles. All this trying.
Give it up!
Let yourself be one of the God-mad,
faithful only to the Beauty you are.
Let the Lover pull you to your feet and hold you close,
dancing even when fear urges you to sit this one out.
Remember- there is one word you are here to say with your whole being.
When it finds you, give your life to it. Don't be tight-lipped and stingy.
Spend yourself completely on the saying.
Be one word in this great love poem we are writing together.
© Oriah Mountain Dreamer,
from the book The Call,
HarperONE, San Francisco 2003
So how do you want to BE today?
Every blog I share comes from the heart and has a challenge or a question within it to help others explore new ways of thinking. I hope that as you read the blogs you would consider starting conversation by commenting. We can learn so much together!