Imagine taking a seat in a theater to watch a film composed of scenes from an ordinary day in your own life. What if the day chosen was unknown to you, along with every person seated throughout the venue? What feelings rise to the surface as you look around the room? Are you feeling calm or anxious? Curious or fearful? Empowered or paralyzed? Is there an awareness of your own need for control, a desire to escape or are you experiencing a sense of detachment from the event?
Does the situation immediately bring to mind a list of imperfections, mistakes or regrets? Perhaps it feels as though you’re under a huge magnifying glass, subject to the reactionary judgement of others. Do feelings of self worth come under attack? In the next moment take a deep, cleansing breath. Release whatever negative emotions this hypothetical scenario has brought to the surface.
Now that you feel safe, let’s explore the riot of feelings that just coursed through your being. What just happened here? Initially, it’s worthwhile to consider the sort of day that you feared or hoped would be shown to the entire theater. One of those days where everything went wrong or instead, a memorable day that was happy, rewarding and beautiful?
In the end, whichever type of day came to mind for you, it’s difficult not to have felt vulnerable. None of us are perfect. Such a state is impossible for human beings to attain. The public image we project, doesn’t always square with who we really are.
Who are we? Really? My own life is in a perpetual state of creation. As I gain insight and build awareness I make mid-course corrections and get back on track through deliberate changes in direction. The day-to-day comparative is determined by the amount of effort I devote to living authentically.
I notice a distinct difference in the quality of a day when it becomes apparent how I have chosen to walk through it. Am I too distracted to get at the truth of things or am I engaged with the effort of conscious, mindful living? The decision to change is the beginning of self-mastery. We all have parts of ourselves that we would like to conquer or bring into balance.
The task of crafting an authentic life is more than simply adding a few decorative accents to one’s day. It implies courage necessary for honest analysis about what causes us distress. Equally essential is the presence of discipline. Without discipline we have no hope of making progress in the work of mastering ourselves in terms of thoughts and behaviors. None of this matters if we don’t begin by loving ourselves and considering ourselves worthy of the task.
In the spiritual classic, ‘The Imitation of Christ’, author, Thomas A Kempis advises that we “withdraw ourselves forcibly from everything to which our nature is viciously inclined, and to labor earnestly after that virtue in which we are most wanting.”
What burden if released would free you to design the type of life worthy of your destiny and your dignity as a human being? How does it steal from your day? We tolerate an unproductive habit or a harmful addiction because these behaviors or thought loops assist us in evading some part of reality. One day we awaken to the harm caused and begin the journey towards a healthier life. Imagine walking through your day not feeling as though you were ruled by outside forces. We can choose not to be enslaved by a ticking clock or a negative thought.
How do you regard your own existence? Is it rare, precious and fleeting like the glow of moisture on a shiny leaf of ivy after a soft, morning rain? Count the moments of awe, joy and peace that you experience each day. Is life something that happens to you or are you making decisions to create a life that you desire?
There is beauty inherent in even the most wretched of days. To develop the ability to perceive it we initialize a practice of searching for it. Stop a negative thought the moment one arises. Replace it with a prayer, a line from poetry, or a self-designed mantra. Point yourself in a radical, new direction. Pull into the parking lot of that Pilates studio and walk inside instead of driving past it as you usually do.
Create new pathways. It’s amazing what you can do once you begin coaching yourself. As long as you continue to draw breath, you possess the power to change. Imagine being in alignment with who you really are! Not only will life gather beauty, momentum and creativity, but you will begin to inspire and elevate the spirit of all those around you.
At this moment, I would like for you to return to your seat in the theater. The opening credits are rolling. The audience begins to focus with anticipation. They are unaware that you are seated amongst them. They share a collective goal of connecting with the power of inspiration in order to change their own lives. You have walked that path and this film is your story.
Bridget Geegan Blanton’s writing career as a newspaper columnist, a web-site contributor, content writer and French language translator has found new expression as a novelist. Whispers on the Wind, Bridget’s debut novel was the first installment in the Celtic Heart historical fiction series that continues with A Woman’s Equal Share. Join Bridget’s E-zine and receive a free E-book: ‘Essential Oil Diffuser Blends and other Beneficial Recipes’ just for subscribing. http://bit.ly/1rMNT9h
Paperbacks in the Celtic Heart Historical Fiction Series are available exclusively, here at Desert Rose Books. Visit the Bookstore.
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