Are you expecting? I was.
Several blog posts ago I focused on perfect love and to date I continue to work on my ability to give and receive love effortlessly.
These last 40 days provided me with the opportunity to travel further on my love quest. After much soul searching and peace searching, I found the root of my love challenge. I was expecting! What an enlightenment! My discovery allowed me to walk on, and I confess the road was rocky in my pursuit of peaceful, effortless love.
My extended journey led me to a trinity of sources and each one provided me with the clarity I was looking for. The first person was (is), Jesus Christ. The compassion of Jesus and His ability to love in the face of adversity, continues to astound me. Saint Paul describes the emptiness of action without love in 1 CORINTHIANS, CHAPTER13 . Although I know I will never reach Jesus’s level of perfection, His model of love pushed me to conduct a short but meaningful activity that I developed for myself. I divided a sheet of paper down the middle. On one side of the paper I listed five words that I felt defined the qualities of love.
5. Indulgence (which is different from understanding and/or sympathy)
On the other side of the paper I listed five words that I felt defined the qualities of compassion.
Suddenly I realized my definition of love was exhausting me in my efforts to show love and in my husband’s efforts to meet my expectation of love. In that moment compassionate love blazed genuine. Didn’t it make more sense to look at love as a soothing value rather than a responsibility that most of the time causes angst?
In my search to fully comprehend my new discovery, I stumbled upon my second source,
Jaggi Vasudev Sadhguru in his talk on how expectations ruin love. I listened intently as Guru explained, “love, most people go into relationships to give love and to get love.” He additional shared, “however, expectations ruin the relationship.” An aha moment! Guru went on to say “not even a god or a goddess can meet the expectations of another and in time the relationship will sour, and why does an individual feel unfilled when each piece of the life is complete by itself?” As I listened the tension of my idea of love began to ease. The calculations of who did what and how many times, and whose turn is it, and if you loved me you would do it began to fade away and be replaced by the peace that comes with compassion.
Wanting to learn more I traveled further down the road where I met my third source, Aruna Shields, on the free meditation app InsightTimer. Aruna guided a six-minute meditative interpretation of the Tao Te Ching. Basically, the Tao enforces the human spiritual perfection and the art of ruling through applying the Tao principles. Personally, I took the “art of ruling” as applied to myself, meaning that by meditating on the principles I can preside over or govern the improvement of my spiritual being. Each of the Tao principles unlocks a mystery. The first principle, “the you who can be discussed is not the eternal you,” shook me to my very core and detonated a fury of feelings I had never before recognized. I realized that my ability to give and receive love hinged on the expectations of others and if me and my choices caused disappointment it would result in judgement and gossip. Crippling! How could I love and give love if I was not true to myself? Here is where the real work began, and in the words of Guru, “when we devoid ourselves of expectations, we set ourselves free.” ❤
To journey is to discover…. I’ll see you there.
The word simplicity means uncomplicated or a state of simply being. That sounds absolutely divine to me. What if life could be so easy? Or could it? So often I find myself presented with a minute problem, for example I recently purchased a new sofa. I absolutely fell in love with it at the store and the measurements fit my desired space. It seemed to be a smooth transaction. The next day the delivery truck arrived, the movers unload the piece of furniture and I hated it. In that one instance a million thoughts flooded my mind. Will my husband be upset, do I tell the drivers, do I call the company; maybe it will grow on me? Talk about mental combustion. Instead, I could have simply told the drivers I don’t like the merchandise what is the next step? All of my questions could have been answered on the spot. Now I am dealing with a bunch of red tape. Overthinking and analyzing caused this problem to become so overwhelming that I become mentally paralyzed. I am sure I am not the only person in the world to experience this.
As I’ve mentioned in pervious blogs, I have recently embarked on a journey to self-improvement. So often, I wish for a magic pill or a quick fix that will solve all my problems. I’ve come to the conclusion that looking inward and putting in some hard work has been the answer for me. In order to simplify my thoughts I’ve set some guidelines that have helped.
1. Complete one task at a time and allow for a quick break here and there:
This practice has been most helpful during my morning routine because I make the coffee while packing lunches and feeding the dog. I often do not complete one task before starting another and by 6:30 a.m. I am wound tighter then a fiddle. Don’t even ask what I am like by 8 p.m. 😊.
2. Minimize Input:
I’ve limited my social media intake. I found it flooded my thoughts and made my mind more active. This has been very helpful because when I used to take a brain break I would immediately check my phone. Now a brain break is really a break. I listen to a quick 1-5-minute guided meditation.
3. Stay in the moment:
This has been challenging but the reward has been extremely beneficial especially with my relationship. I admit it, I am guilty of opening my mental file cabinet dusting off the cob webs and brining up something my husband has done in the past. The other night a past situation was brought up in conversation with a friend. I immediately felt annoyed. Then I told myself, “this isn’t happening right now.” It happened years ago and all that matters is what is happening in this very moment.” Since I’m being honest, I will tell you this was so freeing. I was no longer bound to the chains that I felt were once weighing me down. I realized I was the one creating the chains. The minute I let go of my grip the chains were no longer there. This is a double win! I simplify my thoughts and I feel more at peace.
4. Surround yourself with people who support you:
Find your tribe and keep them close. Gather around you people who are like minded and encourage you to achieve your goals.
This week has been very interesting and eye opening. I see the world through a different lens, one that sees the beauty rather than the confusion. In the words of David Thoreau “As you simplify your life, the laws of the universe will be simpler; solitude will not be solitude, poverty will not be poverty, nor weakness, weakness”.
“Above all else, guard your heart, for everything else you do flows from it.” That’s Proverbs 4:23 and it’s the bullseye.
I am now more vociferously taking this a step further. I’m guarding the eyes and ears of my heart. What am I watching? Do I really want that image in my memory? What am I giving my attention to both internally & externally? Is it challenging me in a good way? Am I running a rut in a well-worn track? What am I listening to? Do the words of this song uplift me? Am I singing along to what I want to feel? How much negative news does anyone need to listen to on a daily basis? The media wants us to believe it’s 24/7; as if we could possibly miss something.
A long time ago a dear friend said to me “Garbage in – garbage out.” How true those words ring. I’ve decided the scales of my environment need to weigh heavily on the side of positivity including lighthearted, encouraging and hopeful. Who am I surrounding myself with? What is their attitude? Do we lift each other up to braver, lighter more joyful places?
Time is our most precious commodity; Time is wealth; so how am I choosing to invest my heart? What do I want my heart to hold since out it flows the issues of life?
Time to detoxify; recalibrate and set my focus on things that are lovely, kind and of good report.
Sea & Skye
via Change of Heart