There was a time when making lists of my intentions, of what I wanted to create, accomplish, feel, was the right thing for me to do. I would proclaim – in positive language but of course – all that I wanted to create, experience and feel. Craft my intentions. Choose my word. I would use the phrase “May I” to frame my desires as requests to be blessed.
There was a time for that and, for now, that time has passed. It isn’t that these ways of dreaming and planning are wrong – I wrote two books about this way that I love and still read. But I read in a different way. For something has shifted for me and I found every time I tried to plan 2013, I got sleepy.
I read back over my plans for 2012 and felt silly. It all sounded so full of… shall we say hot air?
Maybe this is a function, a natural healthy function, of getting older and maybe it is a touch of depression lingering from the holidays but honestly, what it feels like is a grace, an invitation to become more fully myself.
An invitation to careful listening not because I am asking “What’s next?” but simply because I want to pay attention.
An invitation to be who I am today rather than who I may become.
An invitation to be nourished by my limits rather than railing against them until I flop to the ground in spent exhaustion.
An invitation to learn to be seen and loved for who I am rather than who I thought I would be, should be.
An invitation to savor and serve in the way that feels more alive and real right now.
I share this with you because the dominant story of our time is “bigger, faster, more famous now!” It’s very seductive, and sometimes, bigger (etc.) is what you want and this story supports you to grow – to get out of your way, to live into your genius. When this is so, then I say Yee-haw!
When this is not, however, what you need or want, the dominant story can pull you toward exhaustion, tempt you to leave yourself, to want what everybody else wants right now (even if they don’t really want it either). If that is ever the case for you, come on over and make a cup of tea and then we’ll go for a long walk in the woods and marvel at the ferns and the thick green moss on the old vine maples. Just because.
Here are my guiding questions to help me deepen this period, this time:
What gives me joy?
What calls to me when I am freed of having to be somebody?
What questions are guiding and sustaining you these days? Do you need the story of bigger to help you or the story of another way? I would, as always, love to hear.