And the day came when the risk to remain closed in a bud became more painful than the risk to blossom. Anais Nin
At some point on our lives, we ask ourselves if we are living the life we really want. Very few of us can say yes to this question. Most, if not all of us, settle for what we have. We make up a story with many variations that explains why our life is the way it is. Usually these stories involve many of the limiting beliefs we have adopted during our lives. It might sound something like this:
"If it were meant to happen, it would have by now. I should be grateful for what I have." At other times, it might be, "I'm not good enough," or it could be, "I'm too old" - I'm sure you have your own version.
For much of my adult life, (until 2000) my comfort zone had been my law practice. Many years have passed since I let go of my resistance and made the choice to get out of my comfort zone and leave the practice of law behind. Do I still have concerns and insecurities? Absolutely. But I've accepted that there are always going to be loose ends and uncertainty. I have become more comfortable with not knowing how it's all going to turn out.
If I had not made the career change that I eventually did, it would have been impossible for me to experience the personal freedom that I have in this period of my life. Getting in the swifter currents and deeper waters does involve risk, but that is what is needed to bring more aliveness into our lives. We are reluctant to change the story about our life, until it becomes too painful to continue on the same path.
We all know people who seem to be happy and optimistic. They see possibilities and opportunities in every situation. They know what the great teachers and masters know; that no matter what happens in your life, changing the meaning that you give an event or circumstance is the key to finding joy and happiness.
Our thoughts are powerful and shape our experience of reality. Quite often we tell ourselves that we don't have enough time for the things that can improve the quality of our lives. Even when I was a busy trial lawyer, I realized the importance of meditation and yoga to my psyche. The daily practice gave me an edge to deal with the stresses of everyday life whatever they might be. Not only did my body become more flexible, so did my mind and way of thinking.
Through yoga I learned about finding and expanding my edge, which in a yoga asana (posture) is the feeling you have, when you believe if you stretch further, you might injure yourself.
That edge shows up in our lives on a daily basis, when the fear and considerations that we experience prevent us from moving forward. Yoga has inspired and enabled me to keep expanding my edge so that I am willing to consider possibilities in my life that at one time I would not have considered.
There is a natural evolution to life's unfolding. When the time was right, I let go of my resistance and stepped out of my comfort zone, and made the life-altering career change that I did.
Whether it's a relationship, career or anything else you want or desire, integrating a new belief system into your life is a process. That new belief centers around the idea that what might be possible, might turn out better than you have ever imagined.
What helped me in the integration process was that after meditating, I expressed gratitude for the many blessings in my life. Focusing on what you are grateful for shifts your focus, from what isn't working and what you don't like about your life, to what is working and what you do like. It will also help you to overcome your tendency to worry. I know this tendency places me in good company.
We have no way of knowing what is going to happen in the future, yet, for some reason, when we worry we think we do. In the process of training our minds to think more positively about the possibilities in our life and our exploration of the unknown sea, life becomes less of a struggle and more of an exciting journey of discovery. Since we know what it's like to dance on the river, we welcome what's next.
Getting closer-THE SOUL OF UNCERTAINTY will be released this fall:
A young man just setting out in life encounters a mysterious "modern day mystic," Mervin, who promises to help him tap into magical powers inside himself to attain a sense of inner freedom, joy, deep intimacy, and his soul's purpose. In the manner of The Alchemist, The Soul of Uncertainty is a powerful fable that shows the human experience of life in all its ups and downs, forgetting and remembering, on a journey of spiritual adventure.
You know I love to hear from you. Thank you for being part of the Inspire Possibility Community. Let me know how your edge is expanding. I would love for you to share Letters on Life with those in your circle.