In his international Best Seller The Four Agreements author don Miguel Ruiz shares this life guidance.
“Be Impeccable With Your Word.
Speak with integrity.
Say only what you mean.
Avoid using the word to speak against yourself or to gossip about others.
Use the power of your word in the direction of truth and love. “
My oh so wise friend Barbara Cohen pointed out something tonight as she was cooking a yummy and healthy dinner for me. I pride myself on being in integrity in all areas of my life and yet, I have been lying to myself every time I have said that I was going to slow down. I believed myself and then ooopppps…..like Lucy and Charlie Brown and the football, I pulled it out from under myself and fell on my tush. Even when there were moments of emptiness, I justified that ‘nature abhors a vacuum,’ so somehow something would always jump into that place to fill it up. I was working twice as long as I was sleeping….6 hours of sleep and 12 hours of work, at least 4 or 5 days a week. It’s amazing that I didn’t experience sleep deprivation psychosis.
A week ago today, I was lying in a hospital bed with tubes and wires sticking out all over the place, following a heart attack that was indeed a heart opening wakeup call. Gradually, as things began to unravel, I have, of necessity needed to reassess every aspect of my life as I have determined what works and what no longer works for me. Another friend named Annabella Wood (a.k.a Truck Driving Mama) reminded me that “A spinning tire gets no traction.” She oughta know, since she had been a career (peaceful) road warrior/long distance truck driver for three decades or so.
My credibility with myself has been lacking. Now I am being scrupulously honest with myself in ways that I had been too afraid to do before. Today, I had two opportunities to do what I love. I had been invited to run a staff training for a respite in my area at the end of July. I asked if it was possible to bump it to August or September. She was more than willing to accommodate my adjusted schedule. When I speak, I am ON, baby…moving around..think Leo Buscaglia on steroids! In this moment, speaking and strolling casually is a breathtaking experience, and not in a good way. The other was a wedding next Friday at a beautiful B & B where I have officiated others…the last time was this past summer, literally as my left knee gave out on me and I did the ceremony hobbling with a borrowed cane and then drove to the ER immediately. I turned it down and gave them other options among my clergy friends. I actually felt good about saying no, when in the past, I would have been terrified of losing business. I am trusting that my needs are being taken care of in all ways. As I am learning- sometimes saying no to someone or something else is saying yes to myself.
Photo credit: Trippy Meter Maid ctd 2005/flickr