Hello! I must say that life has taken some subtle but significant turns for me these past couple of weeks. Most of it were triggered by me and my decisions to take charge of my life and to pull myself out of unhelpful default modes.
I am glad to say that I have overhauled the foundations of my life (I even took a two-day personal retreat to really ponder and plan on things) and while the house isn't finished, I know that I am standing on solid ground. I will write more about this particular journey in my next posts but for now I would like to share the peace of mind I have gained in simply making decisions and taking time to have clear strategies of executing them.
What are the decisions I have made? Many of these will sound so normal or ordinary, and some may even say ask why am I only thinking of these things now? Believe me, I have been plagued by these matters throughout my life but I have just always resorted to band-aid (short-term) solutions -- most of the time I never realized that I was just masking things and not really resolving them.
What made me make the decisions in the first place? Call it metaphysical unease. Call it life dissatisfaction. Call it fears about the future. Call it a hotpot of all plus more (maybe even throw in a scoop of midlife crisis). I found myself generally feeling like I should and could be doing more and making more happen. I also felt that I have not been operating at full potential. There were things I wanted but then I already knew they would not be enough because I used to have them before and my happinesses were often short-lived.
I found myself gravitating towards "inspirational" and "self-help" books that I would not have probably given a second glance before. I found myself re-reading books that once gave me useful directions but are now giving me new, more challenging tasks and at a deeper level. It was both a new experience and also a humbling one to learn/ re-learn the basics of everyday life. I thought I always knew what to do and most importantly I thought I always knew what I wanted. Maybe I did but I had forgotten quite early in my life, especially when society applauded me so much for being such a team player for doing what was expected and retail therapy masqueraded as my best friend.
So what decisions have I made? I decided on what I really wanted. Without guilt. Without fears. I matched that with my desire for everlastingness -- my mark in the world, how I want to be remembered when I die. Surely I do not want a eulogy that goes something like "she was so smart she helped sell a billion packs of fruit juice."
I followed my heart in a meditative journey and we swam through the sludge of my history and past decisions. I encountered moments of epiphanies that fell by the wayside, hit and run casualties by the devil of distraction. I saw beggar dreams from my childhood hungry and ignored looking up at me expectantly. I saw the gravestones of lost opportunities, massacred by fear. I saw a wasteland choked with procrastination, discouragement, regret, distrust, anger. And fear. So much of the stuff is floating around, cloaked in so many colors and called by so many names.
But my heart knows what it wants and all I had to do was listen to it. And I must not judge it. And I must let go of my fears. I must not say "That's ridiculous, it's too difficult to do! It's not going to happen" or "Is that even possible?" or the worst of all "But what would other people say?"
So we mapped my history, rescued some dreams, cleaned up as best we could. We made note of what could still be changed and made peace with what could not. The hardest part was self-forgiveness. My heart did most of that. My mind was all sharp logic and skepticism.
Then we took out a fresh new piece of blank paper. This time, for the first time, I let my heart handle the cartography of my present and my future. So much unfamiliar territory yet also so much of what's familiar with new paths. So many tasks and challenges. So many commitments. So much faith required. And yet, I find myself starting to feel... better. So much better. And more certain. Clarity and purpose that are true to one's nature and attuned to one's heart are blessed things to have.
So that's where I am right now and what's been filling up my days on top of, beneath, and through the daily (new and improved) routines. No roller-coaster rides like the fleeting feelings of falling in love. Instead, a lively-enough pace that fills me with serenity, gratitude, and sprinkles of (rediscovered) magic.
Have a great day everyone!