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

Step by step

Quote

“You must first have the knowledge of your power; second, the courage to dare; third, the faith to do.”

Charles F. Haanel, 1919

What better way to know your power than to feel you are here for a purpose; it is one only you can do well, given your specific talents, abilities, and the spark of care that you feel for that which moves you?

What is it you care about so much you feel

it to be impossible not to move toward it,

with care for it overflowing in every step?

_____________________________

_____________________________

What better way to have courage to dare than to act without thought of self in service of that which moves you, and using some or all of abilities you feel you do well — and the world smiles back in return?

What do you do, and do so well the world smiles at you

when you are in the midst of it?

___________________________

___________________________

And the faith to do . . . ah, there’s the task.

Faith is making the plan, starting at the point where what you dream as your life and life-work is still only a vision, lovely and glowing, and moving backwards to where you sit today, making the plan.

Faith is seeing something that doesn’t necessarily appear to others, but which you see and feel clearly.

Faith is knowing something exists when you don’t tangibly see it. Faith is the vase with water in it, neither half full nor half empty, but rather overflowing. For it is filled with water to the level you see it, and it is filled with air that you can’t see overflowing out of it and enveloping you and all that is in this beautiful world.

Faith to do is taking little step by little step from where you are today to the vision you see in your imagination and taking action in faith you have all the air and water you need now and en route.

So take a little a step today and see where you are! What a beautiful day!

Blessings on your little step today…

Elizabeth Darby

Link

More on Success:

This lovely reflection from business professor Clay Christensen, from a couple years ago in the Harvard Business Review. I keep it handy for days when I, too, need to remember that Success is a life-work as well as a moment-to-moment state of smiles:

How Will You Measure Your Life

by Clayton Christensen

http://hbr.org/2010/07/how-will-you-measure-your-life/ar/1?cm_sp=most_widget-_-hbr_articles-_-How%20Will%20You%20Measure%20Your%20Life%3F

Blessings on your day!

Elizabeth Darby

What a Success!

How do you define Success?

How do you define your success?

Is it how you define success for someone else?

If you have moola-$ and no health, is that a success?

What if you have health and no moola-$, is that a success for you? Today? Now? In this moment of your life or for all time?

If someone else you have deemed “a success” has moola-$ and oh-by-the-way a little later on, you read headlines of his or her living (enduring) in a state of no health (whether addictions, self-destructions, or tragic illnesses), is that Success?

Does that life-experience still count as being in the “What a Success” category — in your estimation?

If you have plenty of moola-$ and no family, is that Success?

Repeat the question for those you esteem: If they have “plenty” but alas did you hear/read about their family… do you still consider Success to be in the equation by your definition?

If you feel “What a Success” about your life’s daily journey thus far … and yet no paparazzi are on your curb, is that Success?

After all, we wouldn’t know about the Success of those we esteem if it weren’t for the paparazzi capturing it for us, would we? And that makes them a … Success?

So “What a Success!!” really quickly gets  down to what you desire, what you want to experience, the costs of trading one success for another.

How do you define success as a Whole Life experience? Because like life insurance, you either buy the Whole Life or you buy the Term insurance — and be assured that they cost very differently and the return is very different.

Defining for you — only you — “What a Success” means also gets down to being willing to admit that what we esteem in others and how we define their Success we may — or may not — want to apply to our own lives.

Maybe this will help: A question from my book and workshops:

To Live Each Day I need*:

1) ___________________________

2) ___________________________

3) ___________________________

4) ___________________________

5) ___________________________

I might want these things:

____________________

____________________

____________________

But I really Need:

____________________________________________

*Need vs Want. Things you Need are things your Soul can’t live without.

The things you need might vary from the basics of a roof over your head to food on your plate. Needs might also include a big sky overhead, peace and quiet, or urban verve, or the connection of a family or a home-refuge nearby, or to be as far way from family as possible!  Among the Wants might be the kind of roof and how big a roof you want it to be and the quantity of the food on your plate.

Needs might include health to enjoy your life successes, large and small, like the energy to join in with the laughter of a loved one, rather than collapsing into a coma at night or feeling irritated at the humor — What are they so happy about?

Needs might also include Time — like having time to lovingly dry your child’s tears on any given moment of a day… (What did you have him or her for, if not to be available when s/he needs you?)

However, both Needs and Wants however defined will end up driving your life, your hours spent, your joy in your moments while here, and ultimately how you define Success in your time spent here on Earth.

Too often the Wants take over.

So Be Clear.

It’s what you need that will keep your Work true to You. . . 

And in being true to You and your definition of Success, your Work will be created more easily and joyfully….

If you are meeting your needs and are clear on how you define your Success, then it’s your paparazzi moment, if so desired:

Take a photo right now, even if only in your mind’s perfect camera, and frame it…

What a Success!

Blessings on your successful day, wherever in the world you are and however you define it!

Elizabeth Darby

Taking First Steps

Two steps forward, one step back. Or three. Or twenty forward and only two back.

 

How do you measure progress — whether in your life or your career?  Do you measure progress it more harshly in your children than in yourself?  Or vice-versa?

 

Do you measure progress by the well-being and simply joy you feel, or by your sense of connection to something greater than yourself, or by your Stuff Buying Ability (SBA as opposed to MBA)?

 

When in dire straits, whether facing challenges in life, new directions or personally earth-shattering days, our SBA can be the handrail of our Titanic ship of life.

 

Or we can get still, look within, breathe, become slowly aware with each breath that the space you take up as a soul here and now in your life-time you are spending right now is far more potent and  beautiful than the space your Stuff takes up. Do it just now.  Breathe, feel your eternal soul taking space here in this moment of your life, and know you are all you need to be. Naked. Without the stuff of progress or the ability to buy more.

I think progress is being On Task and On Purpose:  Using your inner stuff for the beauty and work in the world you are here to do.  It may be a small step forward lit by a lot of angst, or a giant moment of Being full of light: a shining smile, a hand extended in the service of that which you care deeply about.

My progress today is offering two covers for my forthcoming book: Here You Begin: A Guided Journal to Your Passion, Your Purpose and Creating the Work Only You Can Do.

Let me know which you prefer!