For many of us in the U.S., this marks more than six months that we have been in quarantine. I refer to it as ‘self solituding’ and the experience has been both terrifying and comforting. In mid-March, as the buds were beautifully blossoming, I was turning inward, attempting to wrap my mind around the possibility […]
Tomorrow, a fresh new page on your calendar and a new decade will be staring you in the face just as you are recognizing a turning point in your life. Although I believe that time is a mental construct, I too honor transitional periods. I especially love the ending of one year and the beginning of another. I view them as an opportunity to renew my commitment to be the best me I know how to be as I step across the threshold from one time frame into another. New Years’ Eve sees me surrounded by friends, many of whom have been a part of my life for a decade or more. We dance, sing, drum, and eat a blend of healthy and decadent food. Although alcohol is present, I have yet to see anyone get alarmingly sloshed and I don’t drink at all, by choice. Some of it is a means of keeping my wits about me and some is to be in solidarity with my clients who are in recovery from drug and alcohol abuse or addiction.
I engage in a ritual in which I honor the people and experiences that were not in my life when the year began. I sometimes use a Japa mala to count them. In case you aren’t familiar with them, they are Buddhist prayer beads, like a rosary with 108 beads and one extra. Practitioners often recite a mantra for each one. I bring to mind the people whose presence in my life has made a difference and then send them love. I express deep gratitude for the experiences that have come my way, sometimes referring to them as ‘blessons’ which is a conjunction of blessing and lesson. If I haven’t been totally thrilled with them, at least they have served to make me stronger and more resilient.
I also know that I have a purpose which fuels every aspect of my life. Do you wonder what yours is? I have long known that mine is to be a channel for love and healing as a communicator in written and spoken word. How was I sure? All I can tell you is that I feel most fully alive when I am doing those things. It is ‘what I was born to do.’ I don’t get stage fright; ok, the occasional ‘flutterbys’ in the stomach…but mostly very much at home when speaking. It is like being an athlete in the ‘zone’ where nothing else exists but you and the game, sport or race. In my case, nothing else exists but me and this page, or me and the audience. What lights you up from the inside and turns you into a human sparkler? What can’t you just wait to do the moment your eyes open (besides using the potty)? What feels more like play than work?
Many people are determined to create the ill-fated New Years’ Resolution, convincing themselves that they ‘should’ lose weight, stop smoking, go to the gym, watch less TV, or get sober. In many cases, they have gone the way of all winds within a week. I have noticed that attendance at my gym takes an upswing in January and then levels off a few months later. I’m delighted to say that I have been going there several times a week for the past five years, in part because it never was a resolution, but rather a component of an over-all healthy lifestyle plan.
What if, instead, we set an intention or create revolutions? I do that every day, even before my feet touch the floor, opening the door to “amazing people and extraordinary experiences.” I ask to be mindful and heart-full that in every moment I have a choice as to how I perceive and respond to any situation that comes my way. I have become the ‘queen of reframe’, as things that would have knocked me on my butt, are now an opportunity to ask, not “why is this happening?”, but “what can I learn from it? How can I use it to serve myself and others, and how can I turn it into grist for the mill for my writing and teaching? ” The answers are always there waiting for me to scoop them up. It literally feels like unwrapping gifts that are constantly being laid at my feet. Some arrive as if I placed a specific order with the Celestial Shipping Department and were sent Special Delivery. All are welcome.
This year has had its shares of joys and sorrows. So much turmoil on the planet, that I sometimes feel at a loss to navigate, understand and change. I can’t look the other way and accept the status quo. It is the responsibility of everyone to heal and not harm. Each day, I set the intention to be a force for good in the world. At the end of each day, I ask myself what I did to forward that goal.
As a journalist, I have written about the injustices, the violations, the outrageously cruel behaviors as well as the acts of kindness and caring. It would be so easy to become jaded as a result of the former, and I am replenished by the latter. It’s the only way I can keep on keepin’ on.
So, my revolutions for 2020 and beyond:
Being in integrity, saying what I mean and meaning what I say. Living so that at the end of each day, I can face the woman in the mirror, head held high.
Living as an Opti-mystic who sees the world through the eyes of possibility.
Taking off the mask, stripping off the layers to reveal the real.
Stretching comfort zones.
Putting my heart and soul into all that I do.
Taking leaps of faith.
Looking any fears/hesitation/limiting thoughts square in the face, ask what it is here to teach me and then blowing them away like so much dandelion fluff.
Listening to and following Divine Guidance, since it has never steered me wrong.
Letting go of how I alone think things should go and embracing the partnership that I have with Spirit (see above).
Speaking my truth, with love and compassion, even if other folks may not want to hear it.
Taking care of myself , body, mind and spirit.
Emotional bungee jumping…taking risks that I might have feared embracing.
Honoring my gifts to the world.
Open heartedly living each day.
Being a greater force for good in the world.
Letting my creativity flow unabated.
Asking for what I desire and opening to receive it.
Hugging it out any chance I get.
Going heart to heart rather than head to head.
Accepting what I have asked for with open arms.
Listening with the ears of the heart and being fully present to the people in my life.
Being a miracle manna-fester.
What are YOUR New Years’ Revolutions?