It is not my intent to be uncooperative or argumentative. I never rise in the morning with a plan to see others as difficult or ungrateful. But, soon antigens like stress, fatigue, and illness feed into the chaos of my day and next thing you know otherwise favorable relationships begin to sour.
It is easy to defend my actions, to blame others, and to deny the fear that gives rise to my crustiness. But, for what? Why is it that just when I need kindness most I fuel the unrest?
If we seek empathy, acceptance, and compassion from others, we must first practice it ourselves. Reflecting on how we come across and how we see others may help us to be more patient with the “cantankerous” people who cross our paths each day…and that just might make it a little less likely that we will be the cantankerous ones.
Just humming along, everything seeming to go according to plan.
Then, there it is…the morsel of doubt…the blip in confidence…suddenly I have lost my way.
On the outside the path appears unchanged but on the inside the screen has just gone dark.
In that blip, that fractional space of darkness, I am momentarily paralyzed by thoughts that I am not all that…I don’t know what I’m doing…I become lost in judgment and expectations.
Everyone has them, those points of doubt when the screen seems to go blank. That’s when we must dig deep and patiently allow the system a chance to reboot, clearing out the malware and drawing on the back up files of imagination, courage, and wisdom to stay the course.
And then the blip is gone.
Life is not about suffering. Yet, frequently I fall into a pattern of thinking I am not fully living my life if there is not conflict or hardship.
I have made up a story that there is no room for me to be happy, no time or purpose for self care, rest, nourishment, and companionship. No space for laughter, play, and love.
Yet without those features my life is not complete and I move farther and farther away from my natural state of being.
I don’t even realize that the life I think I should be leading, the life that constantly tells me I am not worthy and not enough, is shrouding me in darkness, not because that is who I am supposed to be but as a reminder of what I am deeper inside.
I am enough just the way I am. I am successful right here and now. I am capable of feeling strong, happy, and healthy always. I am worthy of goodness.
I am made of love and my real purpose here in this place and time is to be a source of love for myself and others.
All the other stuff – the striving, the suffering, and self-deprecation — is just like cobwebs and dust, painting a picture of dismay and decay. However, quite easily with a swift and conscious swipe I can clear them all away to restore the beauty of the forgotten objects that reside just below.
In this cleaning of my house, I once more feel the freshness, spaciousness, and goodness that is intended to be. In devoting just that little bit of time and attention, that quick swipe, to restoring the luster, everything seems to fall into place. When that shroud is removed all that remains is the goodness that is in fact my life and who I am supposed to be.
Poor behavior is a sign of a loss of agency.
Lashing out at the circumstances around me instead of diving into the power within me.
There within I always have the capacity to choose, to “re-cognize” and bring back into my mental awareness my own tools of agency. I don’t need someone else to pick me up, to defend me, or clear the way for me.
I can feel confident, strong, and happy through my own decision making.
Whatever the story, with agency I can produce my own powerful, beautiful ending.
When I am balanced mind and body, I am just ripe. There is no bitterness, no tough skin to cut through. I am neither too soft and falling apart.
Picked too soon, I am raw, needy, unready. Left to ripen too long and I begin to sour and decay.
Perfectly cultivated and connected to my core, I am a source of sustenance, giving flavor and nourishment without expecting anything in return.
Delicious, sweet and juicy, is what you get when I give myself ample time on the vine.
At my core, there is a fiery hot center, a burning ember that stokes my will, drives to protect me, and provides great strength.
When guided by my intuition that fire burns bright as the sun in the distance, like a gentle warrior claiming victory through kindness and compassion.
When led by ego, it becomes blinding and oppressive, randomly erupting in all directions.
That is when I call upon the moon.
The moon with its still darkness brings calm, restores balance. Gathering and redirecting the excessive sun energy, the moon cools the fire to a soft, gentle glow once more.
The mist of ego retreats and the inner wisdom once more shines humbly.
The moon provides just the right light for me to see my way.
Inside, bright and shining. Outside soft and calm.
Harnessing the strength of the sun and the peace of the moon, I am whole once more.