Today’s chat is brought to you by a comment from a reader, my own innate silly spirit and Marlo Thomas. Last night I got the idea to formulate today’s tea time chat about this song and began going through the numerous videos of children singing in school plays. It was so sweet to see young kids singing about being free although most of them looked so scared up on stage! I chose this video to share with you because these kids seemed the silliest and most free of all. It also made me think that underneath my wanting to get things right has always been a very silly sense of humor. When I am my authentic self with the ego stepping aside, I am quite silly. It comes from my Dad who is the silliest person I know. Watching the kids in these videos made me reflect backwards in time when I felt free to just be. It seems that through adulthood we are often so drawn into the becoming aspect of development that we lose sight of the pure joy of just being. We are constantly on a treadmill which we think is taking us towards success and happiness but often the path is straight towards a brick wall. We are actually lucky if we hit the proverbial brick wall earlier rather than later. I had a conversation with a colleague this week about this process. Once we get on one track it can be incredibly hard to switch lanes and take the exit that brings us back to our heart. Burn out is a very real thing and it seems to be happening at a more rapid pace as the thermostat turns up creating financial pressure. Lately I have been having more people speaking to me about their own version of burn out with the BUT coming after and some version of financial pressure and fear following.
In my post the other day There’s No Place Like Home: we discussed the concept of finding your inner awesomeness and shining it to the world. Often adults talk about the process of truth finding as “soul searching” but in watching these videos it seems to me that the process is actually not as complex as it may seem. The reader who inspired this post spoke about the first part of the process is actually believing that you are awesome and the next part may be just being willing to stand in that without having to prove it or shine it to others. That spin on our conversation made me think “Ya the first part is in knowing that you possess something special.” In the therapy world much weight is put on this being a process of increasing one’s self esteem. We recently chatted about how increasing self compassion has far greater impact on creating a loving and kind relationship with one’s self than focusing on self esteem. This is because it doesn’t possess a hierarchical tone but is more of a humbling and kind process. I believe for me, fostering a loving relationship with myself has been the process that has brought me to this point. We have talked extensively about how metta, loving kindness meditation, has a profound ability to help heal our wounds as well as create a deeper connection with the community around us. Lately I have found myself speaking continuously about metta. As I stated art imitates life. Usually when I find myself sharing something with all of the folks I work with it’s because I need to hear it most! It has been really fascinating to hear stories from people about their experiences reading and hearing about loving kindness. One person shared with me how they noticed that it is the opposite of putting another down to make you feel better. They shared that metta seems to offer another way of fostering growth; one of creating a supportive environment with everyone you encounter. Mmmmm that was a special moment of this past week because it encapsulates the essence of the creation of an energy that has profound possibility for healing all.
How do we allow ourselves to be free to me you and me? By softening the harsh edges through practicing loving kindness, by treating ourselves and others with respect and by getting honest about how we really feel. I was trapped on the highway passing by exits towards happiness because I felt that the way that I was going was the only way possible for my own safety and stability. It was suggested to me that a) there is no such thing as safety and stability in one certain job or situation because life is forever changing and unstable and b) there were so many opportunities that would create far more stability over time that I was not even looking at because of my fear. I thought that was a whole lot of crazy at the time but I listened anyway. This past week opportunity seemed to knock at my door out of the blue. Art imitates life. You start creating a freer and more authentic, accepting relationship with yourself and that same energy comes back at you. Believe in shortage you see shortage all around. Believe in the art of possibility and that is what you see as well. So I leave you with one thought…how are you going to allow yourself to be free even if in some small way? How might you allow for the art of possibility to enter into your being today? I think I will practice being my goofy self today and put the becoming on hold:)
May you be safe, May you be happy, May you be healthy, May you live with ease.
Namaste and Cheers!