Happy New Year!
For the first time in a very long time, I wasn’t working at a restaurant on New Year’s Eve. For that reason, I felt the urge to do something to ring in 2012. Go watch some fireworks? Go to a bar? Surely if I’m not working I should be doing something exciting. What I really wanted however, was to sit on the couch with Brian, eat potato chips and gummy worms and watch Dick Clark’s New Year’s Rockin’ Eve. Nothing sounded better and luckily, Brian agreed.
So that’s what we did. And we were both asleep before midnight. Can’t say I didn’t do something new on New Year’s Eve!:)
Just before the ball dropped (which aired at 10pm our time), Justin Bieber and Santana performed ‘Let it Be,’ a song I haven’t heard for awhile, but always appreciate it when I do.
There will be an answer, let it be.
I read an article in Whole Living magazine on my flight to Vancouver over the holidays by Andrew Leonard entitled, ‘The Gift of the Tao.’ Much of what he wrote hit a chord, but this did in particular:
The contented man is never disappointed.
Now I could hear Laozi loud and clear: Don’t try so hard. Don’t think so much. Laozi writes that if you “temper a sword edge to its very sharpest…you will find it soon grows dull.” I saw myself as that sword edge, turned brittle and fragile after too much sharpening, too much striving. Trapped in a box of my own expectations and setbacks, it was time to free myself.
Yield and overcome
Bend and be straight
Empty and be full
Wear out and be new
Have little and gain
For me, 2011 was the year I became aware of my own constant sharpening, in many aspects of my life. It was a discovery like nothing I had experienced before. It began with my writing and the realization that whether I accomplish all my goals or not, in the end I am writing for myself and because I enjoy it. Writing is my way of making sense of the world. It is my voice. My expression. My stories. No need to fear judgment. So just write, I heard my heart whispering. To which my head rudely replied, Well what’s the point? You haven’t done much with your writing up to now. Do you think you’re actually good enough to do this for a living? Ha!
Just write, my heart said again.
So I did. And guess what? I had articles published in four different magazines last year.
Funny how that works with most things in life. When you simply give in to the process, let go of fear of judgment, quiet the voices in your head, and give all the attention and power to what lies in your heart, you will usually be presented with a sense of peace, if not an answer.
Let it be.
2011 was also the year I discovered plants called succulents. They come in many varieties and Liz planted some in our yard. They’re usually shades of green and often resemble an artichoke. I think they are so lovely. The photo at the top of my blog is a picture I took of our garden (and what I hope to be a reminder to myself every day).
I was listening to a TED talk given by Sark the other day and she happened to say this about succulents, which I never knew:
“A succulent plant gives itself nourishment from the inside, and then feeds itself that nourishment. And in that way, succulence is powerful.”
What an incredibly inspiring metaphor! Instead of looking outward to external means for answers, we must focus on what lies within us and nourish ourselves with that. When we are upset with someone or we criticize or judge, it is usually a reflection of something we are not happy about within ourselves. We must find what fills us up and makes us feel most alive and make time for those things. We must realize that we are the authors of our own lives and it is up to us to create and edit the story. We must remember that the rough patches happen for a reason and usually arrive to teach us something about ourselves.
Succulence IS powerful.
I wish you a wonderful 2012. I hope it is a thrilling ride full of adventure and discovery, both within your heart and soul and outside in this beautiful world.
Here’s what I’m calling my Succulence List for 2012:
Nourish from within.
Enjoy the process.
Be vulnerable in the name of growth.
Appreciate your unique path.
Let it Be.