It happens. We get preoccupied. We do our thing. There are errands, chores, kids, parents, bills — life. And the days morph into months and the months become years. We ignore those repeated small cries of protest that bubble up when we take a minute to breathe. We promise ourselves we will create the space and take the time later. Later never happens, and so the struggle begins.
We find ourselves becoming more stressed, more conflicted because now we are battling ourselves. We want to be free of the unconscious restraints that wear away our happiness, joy and satisfaction.
What would help?
Here are a few suggestions. They are not new, but they are time-tested and honored for their effectiveness.
- Take a nap.
You’re exhausted. I know you are. So, stop, and allow yourself to rest.
A wise mom once told me that 90 percent of the problems within her family were resolved following a decent meal and a good night’s sleep. This mom was right. We often have to return to the basics of self-care just to find our center. It takes courage to stop the wheels of motion and allow ourselves time to regroup and recoup, and as author Sue Monk Kidd says, “Stopping is a spiritual art.”
- Get quiet.
Nap time notwithstanding, we need time to be still and to stop the sensory overload and reconnect with ourselves. There is so much thrown at us in a given day that it is hard to separate ourselves from it all. Consider the words of the poet Rumi: “Let the waters settle, you will see stars and moon mirrored in your Being.” Isn’t that a lovely thought? Think of our individual celestial bits surfacing in our psyche.
- Pay attention.
Our souls do communicate with us. They tell us what thrills and delights them. They nudge us with signs and symbols along the way. Ever have a book fall into your hands or at your feet, a book that turns out to be the perfect book for you at the moment? Ever been gifted with a CD and there is one song that sings to your soul and you play repeatedly? Ever find your personal symbol being paraded in front of you with constant sighting of blue herons or lilies or specific times on a clock?
Carl Jung once said, “Whatever crosses my path violently or suddenly I attribute to God.” The liminal world abounds with magic and mystery. We can choose to ignore or we can choose to attend to the messages swimming just under the radar waiting for our connection.
- Get passionate.
The juiciness of life, high-voltage enthusiasm and deeply felt emotions speak to getting in touch with the rock ’n’ roll of your soul. Simply stated, if you are passionate about what you do, you are most likely listening to the desires of your soul.
- Accept yourself.
How long does it take for us humans to finally accept all parts of ourselves, to forgive our transgressions and gaffes and to operate from compassion? We struggle and struggle and struggle because there is some point, some facet, some aspect that we refuse to accept or forgive. We can be so hard on ourselves. Our souls yearn for reconciliation of the warring parts. Like the potted violet on the windowsill, our souls lean towards the light for growth.
- Listen and trust.
Trust your soul’s inclinations and allow yourself to unfold like the tight bud of a rose. See yourself unfolding, petal by petal, into your full bloom. There is no one else like you on the planet; there is no one with your exact DNA and your exact backpack of experiences.
Your soul calls for you to remember who you are and to walk into your magnificence.
It’s time. The world needs you.