In the past few weeks, I’ve had some encounters that left many residual thoughts. I thought about if these were occurrences I still needed to make peace with and perhaps, what would suffice for atonement. I thought about what I would do differently if I could relive those particular moments and the longer I thought about them, the more thoughts manifested. I reached out to my circle to vent, listened to them and reflected. At the end of my reflection, I knew I had made the right choices and because of those choices, I am in a happy and fulfilling place. Yet, there I was throwing myself a pity party and apologizing for my growth.
Sometimes, people have a deliberate way of reminding us of where we once were in an attempt to dismiss where we are now but only if and when we allow them to do so. We ourselves sometimes think we must know ‘our place’ and ‘stay in it’. Not everyone or everything will be your ‘cup of tea’ and honestly, there is absolutely nothing wrong with that. It is very possible that what may have worked a year or even six months ago no longer does and again, there is nothing wrong with that. My circle has increased, decreased and been entirely reformed with new dots. There have been times when I’ve grieved and times I’ve celebrated but through all these experiences I have grown; willingly or unwillingly, pleasantly or painfully.
As we continue to experience growth in any and every area of our lives, our perspective, particularities, and preferences are likely to change. These changes are harder, for some of us than others, to accept but are inevitable. It can be painful and difficult to embrace but is one of the greatest processes we undergo. When we ignore or are afraid to accept these changes, we ultimately stifle our growth. I am guilty, in my capacity as judge and juror, of handing down too many life sentences to myself for my choices and delaying action. However, I am inexplicably grateful and blessed to have a circle that won’t let me drown in sorrow. Whatever you do in all you do, do not apologize for your growth! And if something isn’t your cup of tea because you drink champagne now, no need to apologize for that either!
Learning. Being. Becoming
When I think of the times I’ve said something I later regretted, they are more often than I’m proud of. I may have apologized but I am certain that my apology did not undo the hurt. Often, they were said out of anger, frustration, fear or some negative state of being to or about a family member, friend or stranger. The fact of the matter is, my words were a reflection of me and hadn’t anything to do with anyone I said them to.
I can remember, too, instances when I loved the kind words of others and its manifestation but didn’t appreciate when their words were unkind or hurtful. How ironic it is that our perspective on things change when we’re on the receiving end. I was irritated, sad and likely angry. At that moment, I thought only of myself and not that their words were a reflection of them and had nothing to do with me. Still, I took it personally.
As Don Miguel Ruiz nicely puts it in his book The Four Agreements, “Our word is the power that we have to create. Our word is pure magic and its misuse is black magic”. It is our most powerful tool we have we have as human beings. Regardless of what language we speak, our intentions manifest through the word. All that we dream, all that we feel and all that we really are, will be manifested through words.
Now that we are aware, let us use our words; knowing its power, to create great things for ourselves and others. Let us then use our words; knowing its power, to release ourselves and others from spells that the misuse of words has placed us under. We have within us the power to create or destroy with our words. What we do with our power is ultimately up to us. LET US USE OUR MAGIC TO CREATE! Abra Cadabra the rest of your life with your words.
Learning. Being. Becoming.
I love the act of gift-giving and I’m always happy to receive gifts. Selecting a gift for someone means reflecting on how well I know that person, whether or not they will appreciate my gift and how useful it will be to them. It is often very personal and a symbol of my appreciation. As a child, I could predict my mother’s gifts because they were the same on every occasion. For birthdays, Christmas, academic accomplishments, being a good daughter and all the in-betweens; books! It was one of her many ways of instilling the value of education and giving gifts that we not only wanted but gifts she knew we needed. It’s ironic how I have found the most thoughtful gifts I’ve received to be books; whether it’s cute notebooks that have become the keepers of many secrets or books like A Year of Miracles by Marianne Williamson gifted by my brother accompanied with a sweet note.
A few days ago, I was selecting a gift for a friend who is moving into a new apartment soon. I wanted to get him something useful in his new space but also something that he would appreciate. Every store I went into had an array of gift items, yet it was a difficult task. I thought for a while about how well I knew him and concluded it wasn’t well enough so I would select something that matched the theme for his apartment. I sent him a message asking if he’d had a theme in mind and continued to browse while I waited for his response. In the time he took to respond, I selected something that I knew would be useful regardless of what theme he’d chosen. When my friend finally responded he said, “I didn’t even know apartments had themes”. I laughed and had an ‘ah men!‘ moment but often, our response is quite the same about our gifts from God.
Some of us do not believe we have received any gifts or have gifts to give others. We do not believe that we have done anything deserving of a gift or have anything worthy enough to gift others. Some of us have not yet acknowledged receipt of our gifts because it is not what we’re expecting or who we’re expecting them from. The truth is that we have all been given gifts from above; good and perfect gifts from our Father in the heavenly lights, who does not change like shifting shadows; not because of anything we have or haven’t done but for everything that we are here to do. Every gift which we receive from our Heavenly Father has been given to us by him in fulfilment of our purpose. There is a great feeling in knowing that we have already received gifts from God and all that he requires is that we use our gifts to serve others!
Learning. Being. Becoming
Every good and perfect gift is from above, coming down from the Father of the heavenly lights, who does not change like shifting shadows.
James 1:17 (NIV)
DO THE THING! The thing you said you were going to do at the beginning of the year but haven’t started. The thing you’ve been thinking of doing but somehow a myriad of doubt overpowers your belief that you are capable of succeeding. The thing that you were in the process of taking action to achieve but found unreasonable excuses to discontinue. The thing you’ve thought of and thought yourself out of yet can’t stop thinking about.
We have all, at one time or another, been at a place where the only thing stopping us is our fear. We do nothing because of the possibility of failing yet if we knew that there was no possibility of failing, we would dare greatly. The Latin phrase Cogito, ergo sum; translates to “I think, therefore I am”. Too often, we are afraid only because we think we are. That is the power of our thoughts and the reason why some of our greatest ambitions, ideas, and dreams are never realized.
Krystal Tomlinson, author of Kill Fear Now: The Art of Courageous Living reminds us that it is our perception of things, not things themselves, which make us fearful. “It’s not enough to be pregnant with possibilities. At some point, passions and plans must exit the womb of planning and hit the dirt”. Too many of us, myself included, have been pregnant with possibilities for too long. Too many possibilities never leave our womb of planning because we are too afraid. It is time to give birth.
Today, let us commit to stepping out with more faith than fear. Let us commit to letting go of what is and trusting what is yet to come. Let us commit to letting our passions and plans exit our womb of planning and hitting the dirt. We cannot continue to play small in this great universe. We cannot continue to cautiously spend our lives wishfully thinking that one day we will be courageous enough. We can, however, take action to dare greatly. That thing, the same thing you thought of while you read this post, do it!
Learning. Being. Becoming