Power

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sunblaze
©2013 lkshaw

It’s interesting that we talk of power — brand power, political power, spiritual power, God power, might vs right power, power to be ourselves, power to attain success — and yet when faced with needing to start over in life, or create one’s work, it seems we often feel powerless.

 

It seems having the …

— power to change

— power to believe

— power to start over

— power to express the best of ourselves …

 … is putting a lot of emphasis on the handle: Power.

Is this invisible potency what gives the uumph to finish the phrase and the day?

 

We seek power to change, rather than simply change, as in your life or my life now in this moment…

We seek power to believe, rather than simply believe (the active verb form) in good, self, God, purpose, kindness, or that there is Work we can create.

We seek power to start over, rather than starting over (as in I’m starting anew now. Power or Not, I’m doin’ it now, today!)

We seek power to express our best, rather than just ‘express my best’ in this moment.

You get the pattern.

 

Where in your life today did you seek the ‘power’ rather than ‘take the action’?

Yes, when not feeling power-ful, we can feel helpless or invisible, whether it’s economic power or power to move the world to a better place for all, or spiritually powered to meet the demands of another day of creating one’s work here.

It’s as if we are not feeling aware of the power already inside, we instead seek it first as a handle.

 

I’ll repeat:

It’s when not feeling power already inside, we seek it outside of ourselves

— as a cloak of ‘being enough’ — to take action.

 

Of course we do:  The word ‘power’ really didn’t come into use in our English language until the 12th Century and at the time was a noun all about being able to act with strength and might, especially in battle. It descended in apparently a rather vulgar way (cf Partridge’s Origins) through Latin from 842 onward as a noun for a sense of potency, and I’ll leave that image to your imagination.  In just a few centuries, power would be contained in political circles and in industry, with the manufactured electrical power suddenly invisibly fueling industry and the work of 19th C Empire, the engines of progress, and providing light to the common person.

Light from nowhere. Electricity flowing invisibly, suddenly everywhere… no wonder we are confused as to the source of our power and needing to feel the might of the term. Much of the 19th and 20th C spirituality is all about the unseen ‘power’ flowing through us and to us, our idea of God and might mixing away into an unseen flow of energy within us as magnetism, attraction, juice, that which we call upon to make our human efforts be successful.

I’m all for power and for feeling and doing what makes any one of us feel powerful enough to be seen. I’m all for expressing our light and using our talents and gifts, doing the Work we are here to do for this world.

When do you feel most power-filled to do this Work you are here to do?

_______________________________________________________

_______________________________________________________

 

Here’s a key, I think:  It’s a power-action circuit.  Take an action On Task and On Purpopse, feel power-filled. Feel powerful, take an action…

Do you feel more powerful when taking the action or do you feel you must wait for the power to kick-in first?

 

I express my best; I feel power–filled when I do. That’s what I’m here to do.

I believe that there is Work I am needed to do and I’m doing it; I am power-filled when I do this… I believe that for you, too.

I change my life —now— to create my work; I shine that inner flow to the outside when I do.

So do you, when you change, create, shine whilst in action. And it comes right back as a feeling of power, a self-circulating energy flow.

 

Waiting to feel power is feeling helpless. I know this; we all know this. Waiting to be recognized as ‘enough’ to be powerful is a long, long wait in a dark, dark closet. The electricity, the shine, the power flowing is within, coming out.

Taking action, shining one’s best, expressing one’s heart, soul, talents, creating your Work, that is taking action that makes a person feel powerful, handle or not, outer recognition or anon.

 

Back to our question:

When do you feel most power-filled to create and do the Work you are here to do?

What actions are you taking that feel to rev up the feeling of power within? Then the power that you feel is a result of these actions, taken with grace.

1) _______________________

2) _______________________

3) _______________________

We are, each and all, needed — by friends, beloveds, our visions and dreams, and by our Time here on Earth — to be our best, taking actions, and making felt the power that is our energy made visible.

In starting over and anew today, shine as only you can, through your actions, expression, believing and doing!

Blessings on your day!

 

Elizabeth Darby

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Joy is the Essence of Success

Joy is the essence of  Success…

My teabag tag on this cold winter’s night.

Don’t you love gifts like this?  It is a winter’s night when the snow has melted slightly and turned to black ice, the moon grows full, and it is a deep cold. The frosted air and all its various contributions — the musky fox who darted through the yard a bit ago, car exhaust, someone’s passing cigarette smoke, the dog who has recently over eaten, and now a sweetly scented cup of spicy tea — clings close to the ground to join into a soupy, heady moment in which to be aware of life passing by.

And yet, this is just it . . . and thus the gift of a moment in time no matter the moment:

When one feels a success, one feels joyful.

When one is joyful, one is a success.

 

Yes, it’s that simple.

 

When do you feel joy?

 

When do you feel a success?

 

Wouldn’t it be nice to remember to feel either or both of these during many moments of each day or on a cold, winter’s night?

For feeling each or both is, in fact, a moment’s choice.

Choose it now and take a deep breath! If in this moment, you are able to connect to heartfelt joy, you are a success. And, if in this moment, you choose to feel a success — you are here doing good work, after all, right? Being your shining best in this moment? — then you feel joyful.

Round and round it goes, success to joy to success to joy…

 

I’ve been thinking a lot about success lately. It seems there are so many recipes to achieve it and so many encouragements in the world to define and attain it. There was even an entire TED radio hour on it on a recent NPR show (good to listen to! Here’s the link: http://www.npr.org/2013/10/25/240777690/success ).

 

When I first heard this show several weeks ago, I scribbled notes immediately as I took issue with so much of what was discussed, for it seemed there was something missing from many of the definitions of success explored in that assembly of speakers.

And what I felt was missing was simply this:

Heart.  Shine,  Soul.

A sense of Being You, On Task and On Purpose.

A sense of being here to do specifically what you are here to do . . . And doing that.

Call it living one’s shine and using one’s gifts for this world.

Although we try to measure success in so many outward ways, as the Ted Radio Hour on NPR explored, the real measure of success is exactly what my teabag reminds me tonight:

Joy.

 

And that, simply, is what I hope any of you feel after working through my book or in working with me one-on-one.

Joy and Success: You are being You at your best and deepest heart-level.

I thank you, at the end of this year in this season of returning light and cold nights, for your joy, for your heartfelt connection in reading my thoughts, here or in my book, or even just for smiling after looking at my work here. Your many likes, nice comments and follows make me feel joyful and have helped to make Here You Begin, a tiny book of good intentions in a sea of self-help gurus, what I feel to be a success.

And so I thank you again!

If I were to define success, for any one of us, you know it would be this:

To feel that you are here, shining, doing your work, on purpose and on task, using your unique combo of talents and heart for this world and in this world.

And that makes everyone around us — as well as you and me— full of joy.

Thank you for daring to shine in whatever moment is before you in your life in this moment, right now.

Blessings!

Elizabeth Darby

Box of Life

It’s Advent. It’s the time of darker days leading to light.

It’s the time of year to quietly give away all of that  —

That

You know, the stuff sitting around — inside — which clutters the windowsill and prevents our shine from pouring out — whether through our eyes from our souls or from our heart/hearth and home into the dusk of shorter days of this time of our year.

And so, with longer nights, we are often faced with longer hours to look at the clutter of our hearts, souls, and living space.

So here’s is a little fill-in-the-blank for your soul:

Quickly, without looking really, fill in the following:

The real reason I can’t live this very moment, no matter how dark or busy or scheduled,

in joy, abundance, peace, poise, and power are:

1) _____________

2) _____________________

3) _________________________________

4) ____________________________________

5) ______________________________________

You might find a lot of name-calling when you fill in the blanks:

They didn’t, He refused, She said…

Name the “They” in your Life, or the He or the She’s that have somehow become crowded in with you in that clutter.

There’s not much space for the answers.

The reason is I want you to write really, really small…

Because these ‘reasons’ are making you live really, really small…

Now then put these  ‘reasons’ for living small in a plain cardboard box.the box of life

Why?

Better to do it outside yourself rather than keep that box of small-life inside, no?

Now, what to do with it?  Obviously it’s nothing of you— your best you shining and full of light of a life on task and on purpose — that wants to be handed on, given away, or wrapped into a nasty surprise for others…

No, this is a present for your self. You’ve put all your feelings of small and reasons for living any further moment of your life in a small way into this box.

Time for transformation:

Now go through your little list and change the pronoun to “I”…

In doing so, you’ve transformed your box of ‘reasons for living small’ to a box of choices for living your life fully, by realizing the ‘reason’ is a personal one:

If a She didn’t love you, you’ve transformed it to “I don’t love me”;

If a He let you down, you’ve transformed it into “I let me down”;

 If They won’t accept you, or believe in you, or support you,  you’ve transformed it into

“I won’t accept me, or support me, or believe in me”…

Open your box, look at your reasons for living small, as if in a box, and change them into

‘I … “  but also add:

“But now I can…’

The magic of this present to yourself is you can end each of your ‘living small’ pinchy reasons by this magic of the season incantation:

‘But now I can… support me, believe in me, love me, be reliable to me…

 — with light, love, and heart and soul and light—

 now I can.”

And as you do, you are letting the light —

of your soul and your being,

your shine,

and the infinite energy of the Universe which animates you into life,

moment to moment, breath to breath —

Into your personal Box of Life, clearing darkness,

allowing the light to flow in, out and into this moment of your life-time  here.

No open box can hold the light, after all..

Now you can radiate shine and leave that smallness behind.

And now you can choose:

Live now, in this moment, no matter how busy, scheduled, or dark,

shining and feeling it from inside.

You are choosing to live On Task and On Purpose, shining brightly,

beaming out of your Box of Life.

Choose light, choose love, choose abundance, choose joy,

choose using your unique talent,

and see what happens… now!

The light is soon returning to us; Life is here now.

Blessings on your day

and thank you to each and everyone who has honored me with

a moment of their time spent reading and writing to me his year!

Elizabeth Darby

On Surrender — to Your Work and to Your Life as the journey it is…

Surrender to one’s Work, not work, is the essence of Life, not just a ‘life’ or the life you are told to ‘get’.

As many say, while we live, we must Live – with every ounce of our being, joy, focus, happiness, and use of our talents and gifts. To live, spending pennies of our life-moments and not living as if we will never have ‘enough’, as of course we can’t take those pennies — our moments of time — with us.

We have to live pouring out abundance and not being a miser with our energy, our love, our talents and gifts, or our Living. As another famously said, I want to be spent when I die, not die with energy and more to give hoarded away inside.

I am re-reading a lovely, life-changing book by the late Dr. Elisabeth Kubler-Ross and David Kessler entitled Life Lessons.

The gist of it, through story, David Kessler’s beautiful reflection, and Dr. Kubler-Ross’s late in life wisdom (she herself was nearing the end of her life at the time of publication), is that it is when we embrace our own inevitable death, we truly are able to live – to Live, On Task and On Purpose with each of our moments we still have to spend here. Too often we do get to this gist of living only with bad medical news or late in life; what a pity, as when we live knowing life is short, we tend to engage more with our time, our love, our passions, and make use of the gifts, talents, and heart-felt purpose we each feel inside. Life becomes more like a lovely ice-cream cone; you know you can’t save it for later when it’s already dripping down your hand so enjoy it thoroughly now.

Toward the end of the book is a chapter on Surrender in which David Kessler tells the Story (Truth begets Story) of a 50-year-old man who faced losing a leg due to complications of his diabetes. He needed encouragement and permission to feel all that was associated with the crisis in front of him and was really angry, of course, as he careened through the grief of his circumstance. David Kessler picks up the story here, as he asked the man if he could “surrender to the situation as it is”.

‘”The horrible possibility that you may lose your leg is constantly on your mind; it’s dominating your thoughts, it’s filling you with fear and anger. Why not think about it for a while, be with it, then let it be? If you’re going to lose your leg, you’re going to lose you leg. Thinking about it, pretending that you are not thinking about it, or refusing even to talk about it isn’t going to make it happen or not happen.”

‘The man responded:  “So if I make peace with losing my leg, if I completely surrender, will it be saved?”

‘I reminded him that deep spiritual work is deep spiritual work. We can’t bargain with it, we can’t say, “If I’m spiritual enough, will I get the prize?” . . .’

 If I’m spiritual enough, will I get the prize?

How many of our moment-to-moment situations in our lives fill us with fear and anger, the twins of demons that eat our life-moments, ebb our energy and our health, and push us off center and off task and purpose? We’re taught culturally never to surrender. And yet, how many of us can fill in another situation, to replace the one in the story, perhaps not as serious or perhaps more, which we pretend not to feel, or think about, but which eats us alive? Especially when starting over, newly jobless or careerless, made redundant and fearing for our future well-being, after life-changing events have happened when returning from war or the race, as well as when starting out for the first time in our life-journey, facing school debts and feeling clueless?  We all have these moments.

And we do bargain:

If I’m special enough,will  I win the prize?

If I’m perfect enough, will I win the prize?

If I’m spiritual enough, I win the prize?

We do this, if only to assuage the fear of . . . surrender.

Surrender to what?

Surrender to what life is presenting, at this moment, as we begin again this day our journey in a finite life-time.  Surrender to trust, to peace, to knowing there is good and light somewhere here, if we just let Life and living be what it is in this very temporary moment.

It’s true that feeling that peace even for a moment can shift your journey from fear to interesting to relief to excitement to even delight.

Surrender is not ‘I give up’, but rather ‘I’m okay and I will look to see what I can do here . . . what are my choices?’ In peace that this   is  the  journey   we often can see what is a choice, a new route, a place of beauty, a new call.  In your choice to be You, authentically and joyfully you, working with your gifts, following your instinctive Yes, is your power. And there is also your Life, being fully lived moment by moment. We surrender to Life and decide, in peace, that we can let it be . . . a journey.

David Kessler writes:

“We take back our power and regain peace of mind when we let things be as they are.

We are, in effect, saying, “I am going to be happy

right now.

I’m not going to put it off.”

That is surrender to your joy, your living Life while here, and to your journey on task and on purpose, filling every one of your pennies of time with the light you are here to give this world.

May you accept your prize today:

A day full of joy, of peace on your journey, and of good — really good — Work that is yours to do in this moment of your Life-time.

Blessings!

Life Lessons, Elisabeth Kubler-Ross and David Kessler, Simon and Schuster, 2000.

A flick’r

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Life goes by in …
©2013 elizabeth darby

“Life goes by in a flick’r…

A flick’r.”

The older man, my host, sat in his kitchen, slightly hunched from his illness, but his bright blue eyes full of energy and wisdom as we visited.

“It was fast enough before I got the ________ but now…” He shook his head meaningfully.

“Life goes by in a flicker. There’s not time for loggerheads.

No time for loggerheads. . . .”

I sipped the lovely sweet coffee and homemade tea cake his delightful wife offered. And I listened intently to his and her lovely, lilting accent and way with words and phrases in this Welsh border-village.

I learned many things in my week in Wales, in not necessarily in this order:

1) I look forward to returning soon;

2) My tendency to repeat myself when using story to offer lessons is clearly due to my Welsh great-grandmother’s ‘Way’ of Story, which I learned from her daughter (my grandmother) with whom I spent every day of my life till her death in 1980. Those I spoke with in Wales like to repeat the important parts of the Story they tell a visitor. It’s the important stuff they repeat.

3) Life goes by in a flick’r.

So, in flipping through my book today and preparing for a second edition, wondering what to keep and what to leave behind, what helped my reader and what doesn’t, I came across this question below.

I pose it to you, now, for you know, ‘Life goes by in a flick’r’ . . . and living On Task and On Purpose requires we live with full heart, full passion, and full love shining forth every moment possible. Nothing held back; no loggerheads inside as well as out.

The Questions:

What I really care about is:

________________________________________________________

How do I show this now, in this moment?

________________________________________________________

If I don’t presently, how could I?

________________________________________________________

How do I want to show or demonstrate this in the future?

________________________________________________________

That last question is a hint about your Work here.

And now.

Demonstrate who you are and Who You Are.

Do it now, for you know . . .

“Life goes by in a flick’r. There’s not time for loggerheads.”

Blessings on your day!

Elizabeth Darby

Never, never

I may never again find a job.

 

What do you feel when you read this?

 

The work I did (that defined me) for my xx year career is no longer open (to me specifically).

 

What is the picture of you that you hold when you dare to feel this or even to say this?

 

Regardless of reason — whether age or factory closing, work moving ‘elsewhere’ or one’s profession eliminated by the advances of technology and cultural taste — the work is specific to you, and thus closed to specifically you. And your identity is, for a dark moment, shattered like Hamlet’s mirror.

 

I am a care-giver, jobless or not, and this is also the work that defines

the hours spent of my life.

 

Until it doesn’t, for those who need caring for also move on — to life, to death, to college, to others, to ‘next’ — leaving you without that outer-definition of ‘work I do’ in life as well.

How do you feel, seeing yourself as a care-giver, knowing that it, too, is a temp position if it’s outwardly defined?

 

“Even if they do all the things they’re told to do — network, improve those computer skills, find a new passion and turn it into a job — many [unemployed and older people] struggle with the question of whether their working life as they once knew it is essentially over,” writes Alena Tugend in The New York Times last Saturday.

(‘Unemployed and Older, and Facing a Jobless Future’,The New York Times, July 27, 2013.)

 

I would suggest this is true for anyone unemployed or in life transition. It’s harder, yes, when facing this when older for when we’re young, we expect there to always be a next gig. But in reality the news from those newly educated and unable to ‘find a job’ for all their investment of hours and thousands of dollars aches just as much and tugs at the soul in the dark of night facing bills and an unknown tomorrow.

 

Our life is spent in a series of ‘temp jobs’, however, no matter our age. Until we find and self-define our Work here to be done — the work only you or only your friend, or only I can do.

 

When our work defines our hours, our journey, our self-esteem, our ability to provide for those we love and ourselves, obviously it’s important. No matter the age or circumstance, whether demonstrating for a living wage as a fast-food worker, a journalist wondering where all the newspapers went (along with the fact- and spell-checking staff), or a care-giver who graduates a child from college the same year the remaining care-needing parent leaves this earth, the work that we see as defining us and fills our ‘productive’ hours is very important.

 

Notice, however, that all of this esteem comes from the eyes of others: the pay-check, the role, the business-card/title and the all-important ‘connections’ and the who-you-knows. These are the tacit measures of Your Worth — the other-defined value of what you do.

 

In a world where people’s souls are reduced to ‘what can you do for me’ bosses and the entire category of workers summed up by the term ‘human capital’ rather than ‘the person who works with me and for whom I’m so grateful s/he does,’ our Worth and Value is too-often defined by what we ‘produce’ rather than what we give and contribute of our unique talents and enthusiasm. It’s a demeaning system when looked at this way, no? And this, too, is nothing new.

 

Now, just for a little moment, focus on what your Work is:

What is your Mission should you decide to accept it

— the Mission you have the perfect package of heart, soul, knowledge, enthusiasm and vision to undertake

(skills can be learned) —

right here and right now?

 

Feeling one’s Work to be meaningful, we know, creates a feeling of self-worth and self-esteem. We carry ourselves differently, we hold our Value in our presence and in our smile, knowing we are using our specific talents, gifts and vision and creating something valuable with our time here.

 

That’s true whether the value is in a well-raised child who flowers using his or her gifts On Task and On Purpose, or in creating good living conditions involving hands to hold and good food to eat for the last few years of a beloved’s lifetime here, or in something new that only you can see and create, whether you sell it or give it away.

 

It’s amazing to me how quickly we go from being seen as miracle, as every new baby feels to a loving family, to being cut down with a snarky ‘Who do you think you are, God’s gift to the world?’ a few years later when we are shining with Presence and working very hard at our job. This feels to be all thanks to a system in which we are made to feel value-less unless meeting someone’s definition of value or ‘worthy of being remunerated’ for what is our only time and our specific and unique gifts to be used in service of … well, in service of what?

 

Something greater than our short lives, simply.  Something we feel moved to do by an inner desire that aches to be made manifest.

 

Call that something what you will. For military, it’s in service of country and maybe even God; for others of us, it’s in service of God or Creation. Yet, for others, it’s in service of society or of leaving the world a better place.

But for anybody, is our individual Worth and Value felt in service of ‘the Boss’ or a corporate board’s paycheck? That doesn’t mean making a beautiful door for a car isn’t a worthy use of one’s life-time here; it is because you are good at it, and when it requires your creativity, skill, discipline, time and yes, joy, for it to be well-made. It requires You, your best shining forth.

 

Your real work is defined by You, shining your best into the world. And that’s possible only if you feel Value and Worth — self-defined — powering it. That makes it more than a job. And it makes it worth pursuing and holding in vision; that makes it Work the world needs and only you can do.

We are charged with this Task: To Be our best, use our specific and unique skills, gifts, talents, and infuse them with joy and enthusiasm in the service of something greater.

 

This is your Work to do:

Use your gifts to be a Gift to this world.

It may not be the job you had before or will ever have again;

but if you are doing your Work you really will feel alive.

 

And hopefully, it will never look like however you defended or defined your ‘value’ before by others. Hopefully, this is the way to find and create your Work, and it may be better than your life spent at a job up ’till now.

 

Who do you think you are . . . ?

 

If you are shining On Task and On Purpose, feel that maybe that’s an affirmative: You are a gift for you are a care-giver and this time it’s not a Temp position. You give your care, your energy, focus, talent, time as truly a gift to this world, for it’s a role only you can be great at, a Work only you can do, a You only you can offer.

 

 Blessings on your day today!

 

Elizabeth Darby

Creative Opportunity

“The secret to a happy life

is to recognize

that no matter what the situation,

there’s a creative opportunity in it.

 

Also, finding meaning and purpose in your life

to make a contribution. . . “*

Deepak Chopra

Yes.

What can you see today through the glass of creative opportunity that might give you a new view of your purpose here and now?

What might be your contribution to the joy of the world in this moment of today?

A question I ask clients when we work together:

I’m a patron of ___________________ and this is what I do, right now, to contribute to my beloved causes…

Why?

Because when we are looking to create our own new Work, journeying in search of our Purpose and Vocation, or especially when needing to find our footing in our Work and Worth in the world when we feel the ground shift and lurch, we need to know — know — that we have within each of us the ability to contribute to the Life of the World right now, in this very moment.

This is your task of purpose today: Fill in the blanks of your Soul that long to put You in the service of your Creative Opportunity, right here and now. Here You Begin…

Step forward with blessings,

Elizabeth Darby

*And Yes, the Chopra quote is from a magazine interview with Oprah over a year ago… how nice to see such ideas so mainstreamed! What a lovely new world we are fortunate to live in that such ideas could become ‘commonly spoken of’ compared to a generation ago of women’s magazine topics.

On Being . . . Perfect

In preparing for a next workshop, a friend “in the biz” of helping others noted all the courses she takes continuously and has for a decade or so. Every day in her work she helps others rid themselves of blocks in energy and the ill-health caused by the holdings we all carry. She is ever present, ever helpful and nurturing. Indeed, she is ever on purpose, being her best self with her clients, so insightful and supportive, clearly living the reason for her being here — and yet, in her alone times, her conversation reveals, she is ever searching for being ‘better’ at the courses she attends … but ‘better’ at what I don’t know, for she is perfect in the expression of who she is, right at this very moment.

It really struck me how much we seek being perfect — whether in body, mind, shape, or soul — rather than seek being, well, ourselves in all our naked beauty.

Of course that beauty includes the scars, the bulges, perhaps even the ugly toes or toenails. It includes the moments of Fear and soul-searching, and wanting to be ‘enough’ and each of these come day after day, shadow and light, shadow and light, as we live our days. Because the beauty and the perfection is shining out from within of course. I’ve long told my daughters the most beautiful diamonds on earth are those that are ‘near’ perfect —not totally perfect —and carry the small flaws within for that is how they sparkle and give off the fire from within. I don’t know that it’s true, but it helps to dry a lot of ‘not enough’ tears and thus it is a truth any of us can live:

We must shine with and despite our flaws, believing they, too, can capture our internal fire and reflect the light passing through us.

A hundred plus a little years ago, here in the West where I live, my grandmother’s family struggled to get enough water for each day’s ‘being’.  There were moral conquests as we struggle with, of course, but they entailed following God’s footsteps, not Being Perfect as God.The Work of getting the daily basics — water, food grown with it, roof strong enough for summer tornadoes and winter winds — was honorable and worthy work of Being and with grace and shine they met the day. Gratitude for the smallest boon, such as an icicle hanging on the roof just out the door so breaking the water in the well unnecessary for another day in January, or a pot full of hail in May to ease the loss of another gallon of water that had to be fetched from the creek a mile away and by foot, filled the house with grace and joy and a moment of Being feeling successful, content and purpose-filled.

As our society here today enjoys luxuries unimaginable to my grandmother’s family (and to much of the world today) it seems we’ve focused our moral attention and struggles on that which we feel we do not have, and thus we might too often seek being Perfect rather than simply Being and greatly Shining with gratitude and on purpose.

A sense of ‘enough’ — and being enough — is what’s missing, no?

 

So as you consider today’s ‘being’ and what ‘being enough’ might include,

do take ‘being perfect’ out of the equation.

As I say in my journal guide …

You are not perfect at anything . . . except at being you.

You are perfectly made for the life and work you are here to do in your Life-time.

You are perfectly able to create — in fact you must — your own Work.

 

As you consider what your Work might be, here’s a question to ponder from my Work:

 

See a child standing before you. See many!

Look at each face carefully and note for a moment

how beautiful each is.

What one thing does this and every child you see need?

_____________________________________

How can you give it to one of them? Two of them?

Each and all?

_____________________________________

That which you wish to give every other child might be just the thing you yourself need or needed as a child,

whether a hug, a sense of enough, a moment of freedom from life-sustaining chores, or being seen,

or the feeling that comes with feeling

worth the care someone else offers,

like you giving to that child you hold in your vision.

Take a moment and see you giving it to yourself as a child.

Now plan and plot how you can give that to the child

you see standing before you,

whether in your vision or in your reality!

May the rest of your day be joyous in your Being You, shining forth your best and most certainly without being perfect!

Here you Begin!

Blessings,

Elizabeth Darby

 

Whose Side?

Page 44, Here You Begin: A Guided Journal to Discovering Your Passions, Your Purpose and to Creating the Work Only You Can Do:

 

Whose side are you on?

 

First thought only please . . .

 

I am on the side of __________________

That needs me to do this: __________________________

Here’s what I do with my time here to show this: ________________________________

For fun:

Make a little sketch of the symbol you wear or carry that shows your allegiance.

 

 

Some of us are on the side of Beauty. Some of us are on the side of Right, or Justice, or Knowledge, or Excellence. Or the Vulnerable or the Voiceless or Freedom.  Or Truth . . .

These are some of the bigger things each of us is willing to work for in our lives or with our life time here — or fight for with our lives…

We sometimes also realize we are on the side of Music, or Art, or Wilderness, or Wildlife, or the Homeless, whether people or pets.  These are more specific, but just as important, as each specific issue is symbolic of something larger we are willing to stand for. Literally stand for, not as in a gesture, but as in standing to assist.

Every moment of every day, you choose a side to be on, whether you know it or not. It’s a cause you were put here to take up and assist, so now acknowledge on whose side you are — and let it be the standard on your path as you journey from here, today.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Thinking about Courage and Abundance

I’ve been thinking a lot this week, of course, about courage… Who hasn’t?

With events in our country this wild week, one is reminded that feeling and being courageous is how we are each called to face every day; we just never know when it might be our turn to inspire others with our response.

Perhaps some of us are quietly aware of it as we struggle with starting over or starting anew, while for others being caught in the middle of tragic and unexpected events such as West, Texas, Boston, and innumerable others that didn’t make the world news reports, awakens us to the acts and feelings of courage summoned by the unknowns of each day of our lives.

Long before and long after Julie Andrews swept across the wide-screen and into mainstream America bearing Oscar Hammerstein II’s reminder of self-enlightenment —

“I must be the thing I am seeking;

I am seeking the courage I lack”

— we have been reminded of the high-wire relationship between Being and Feeling when admitting there is something we lack.

Whether courage, generosity, abundance, resilience and resource, we are told acting the part and/or feeling the part helps us to Be that which we feel we lack.

Yet acts and feelings are two different things, and that’s what I’ve been thinking about, as there seems to be a third requirement that is this high-wire between authentically acting and deeply feeling to make the desire a real experience. There seems to be a Something that is at the root, ties feeling and being together, and makes both possible and palpable.

We can act —I don’t mean ‘pretend’ of course, but take action — with courage and not necessarily feel it. We saw that in those who showed up and dealt with this week’s tragedies and we will continue to see it in those who face life-changing alterations in family, body and experience as they struggle to feel it within them in the many coming days.

We can feel courage inside, but it doesn’t always show up in our actions, and yet that can be a noble thing too: Summoning the feeling of courage is how many many of God’s Creation get through each day and it may not be demonstrated externally but is internally in our souls, where it starts like a flicker of light. That’s the courage of healing, meeting challenge and difficulty. That’s the courage of starting over and it starts as a feeling before the action or the experience of ‘being courageous’ is necessarily demonstrated.

Yes, we can Be the thing we are seeking that we feel we lack, and it’s clear with courage.

But is there a third element behind being/feeling courage?

Where does that inner strength flow from?

 

When asked why they run toward the bomb, toward the fire, toward the danger, these brave souls often respond: I did so without thinking; I wanted to be of help (service).

Ah, courage comes, countering instinct to get to safety even, from a faith that one perhaps can be of service, and that one can be and feel greater than one ‘normally’ feels.

Feeling and Being with Faith that one can Be greater in the face of lack or danger — that’s the third element.

How about with other daily required feelings to make tough times transform into living with joy?

Obviously we can feel generous and not be it, even as we seek to experience generosity in our lives. Feeling generous can inspire an action of merely a smile or holding a door, or perhaps just holding a generous place inside when one would rather be irritable at the person holding court in a.m. staff meeting.

Can we be generous and not feel it?  Yes, especially if our acts of generosity are expressed without thinking to a world that feels often filled with unthinking cohorts, like the person texting while the light turns green in traffic in front of you.

To be generous without ‘feeling’ it, at its best, can mean to give freely — whether of soul or resources — without counting.

That means without thinking about what you get, without perhaps even feeling that moment of self-pat on the back. It means being a giver, whether of smiles or nods or tangible substance. Being generous; feeling generous; round and round it can go.

Is there a third feeling behind it? An internal resource required that connects being and feeling generous?

I’d say awareness or connection, something we act with, on, or in spite of. Awareness that we move and flow as if in a tide on this earth, all in the same invisible sea of Creation.

 

For those of us starting over or starting anew, we all know that ‘feeling abundant’ is supposed to grease the wheels toward not having to scramble for change in the bottom of the closet, so your child has lunch-money again today.

We are told over and over that to Be Abundant in this world one must Feel Abundant.

That’s hard when one is scratching in the dark emptiness of that purse, closet, bank account or hiding place for one’s soul when facing dark times or starting-over times after pink slips from job, career, college or marriage. Yet we are told to Be the thing we are Seeking . . .  we must be the thing we lack, and in this case, it’s tangible. How can one Be Abundance when one is lacking it?

When starting over or starting out in life, can one feel abundant and not be so?

Yes, if one looks to the abundance of nature, or to the sky and the abundance of space or stars, or to the abundances of education, or to the magnificent resources of the world others experience — and if they can do it surely I can — until empty pocket time comes again. And then it’s a challenge of discipline to feel abundant and not experience it.  It’s possible, it requires faith and awareness, courage and generosity with self and with others, and gratitude for what one does have: Life, perhaps health, the sun and the moon. Feeling abundant without experience of it is indeed a spiritual discipline.

Can one Be abundant without feeling it?  Obviously, as people all around are ‘being’  amazingly abundant, especially here in the US and don’t necessarily feel it. And especially those who will never feel that there is enough in the account regardless of the millions in abundance s/he might have in an account … but the question was Be Abundant, not be ‘wealthy’ or be ‘rich’ without feeling it.

Nope, the question of abundance seems more about that third element, the one behind the feeling or being the sought-after quality or experience when one feels ‘lack’. It’s not just about feeling gratitude or being grateful, though that’s where it starts.

 

It’s about Worth.

                        Feeling like you have some.

About Being and Feeling enough from the inside.

Feeling and acting Worth-y of abundance, whether looking at it from the feeling or being side.

 

Can one feel abundant if one does not feel to have worth inside oneself?

 

Can one be abundant, experience it and not lack, without being ‘worthy’ in one’s self-estimation — perhaps due to that nagging tiny voice inside that claims, usually without our outer awareness, that one is not ‘worthy’ of all that joy, love, connection, acceptance and care that comes packaged with having Worth and thus experiencing Abundance?

 

Feeling and knowing one has Worth — Faith that one is Worthy of love, care, and sustenance — is the third element to feeling/being Abundant.

“I must be the thing I am seeking;

I am seeking the ___________ I lack.”

 

If one puts Worth in there, rather than Abundance, one has a way to Be and to Feel Abundant right… this… very… moment….

And then we have it all:  Faith, Awareness, Worth, Being of Service to something Greater

 

Whether facing a new day, new territory, and challenging times,

with these above inner connections to Something Greater

flowing through our selves and in the Universe,

we can feel and be On Task and On Purpose: abundant, generous, courageous.

 

From the book Here You Begin:

 

These Actions help me to Feel I have Worth and Abundance —to give —in my Time Here:

 

1) ______________________________

2) ______________________________

3) ______________________________

 

 

 

With gratitude to all those who were and are abundantly and generously courageous today, tomorrow, and always.

 

Blessings,

Elizabeth Darby