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Reflect Out Loud

"The unexamined life is not worth living." – Socrates

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fulfillment

Glimpse Of Heaven

There are times when I really do see it.

I’m comfortable in my skin. Really living my purpose.

You’re by my side. We can design our day, better yet, our lives as we please.

You’re free and fulfilled. I’m free and fulfilled.

There are no borders.

We’re healthy. Abundance flows.

It’s beautiful. We’re beautiful. Life’s beautiful.

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Existential Crisis

So let me tell you about my existential crisis.

I’ve been tossing and turning the “Why am I here, what is the actual point of all this” question in my head for longer than I could remember. I’ve explored theories, entertained fantasies, looked to reason, theology, spiritual texts,  philosophy, science, but nothing really satisfied my query.

Existential bullshit aside, I’m also carrying around the weight of the reality I am currently in.

I am at a point where I am trying to figure out what truly matters to me.
Which is such an annoying task because I’m always changing! If I could only stick to one goddam idea and emotion, that’d be grand. But I’m constantly being pulled in different directions by my moods, desires, feelings, thoughts, and ideas.

One day I wake up feeling confident about a particular decision, set on doing particular things, while the next day I don’t want that same thing at all. My mood is completely different. My desires completely shift. 180.  Example: I am considering moving to Texas or Florida, even though I JUST moved to California (but more on that some other time).

I am currently giving myself a reality check.
Taking inventory.
Like: You’re 30 years old, you’re making this amount of money, you’re working this type of job, you’re waking up this time in the day, you’re eating these types of food, you’re talking to these types of people, you’re spending these many dollars, you’re doing x y z, a b c…. and if you keep going in this direction you’re likely going to be experiencing these particular results  in your future (whatever they may be).

I wish some genius could take stock of everything I’ve done and am doing, enter it into some kind of excel formula and come up with my future trajectory.

Which is what I’m trying to do now… with my average intelligence… and without an excel formula.

Other factors of reality that are hitting me in the face.
I’m aging.
It sucks.
My body isn’t as energized as it used to be.
I can tell my skin is different. My face is more mature. My hair texture is different.

I know on a fundamental level the best thing I can do is to accept myself as I age. The best thing I can do is be kind to myself. To be able to gracefully let go of what was and embrace what is. I know the best thing I can do is to make peace with the new identity I am growing into while having the maturity to release the attachment to the old image of me.

Yada. Yada. Yada.

I know. I get it. Anything outside of unconditional self-regard, self-love, self-acceptance is a recipe for suffering…

BUT – I’m still gonna complain about it. I’m still going to acknowledge how shitty it is. I’m still going to say I would rather not lose my health, beauty, strength, energy, memory, etc. A girl’s gotta vent, ya know?

Anyway…I don’t intend for this post to be about me complaining. You can hear me complain some other time…

My intention is more to share on my struggle towards understanding the real meaning and purpose of life. But given that I don’t have an actual answer yet, and maybe never will, I am trying to create purpose through living a life that feels meaningful to me. I’m trying to figure out right now, in this pivotal point in my life, what is actually going to fulfill me so that I wake up excited to be alive, rather than dreading what I do in the body that I do it in.

There are a lot of details that go into creating a meaningful, fulfilling life – and I am currently trying to figure out what those details exactly look like for me, while also accounting for the fact that I constantly change my mind/feelings/moods.

So in other words, how can I create a life that is fulfilling, meaningful and flexible.

Something like that….

Turns out I didn’t really talk too much about the existential crisis in itself… which often trumps all the day to day “What am I going to do with my life” type questions and goes deeper to ask “What even is life, and why was it given to me and what am I really supposed to be doing with it, if there is even such a thing as ‘supposed’ to, and if there’s not, how do I know that to be true — and who the hell am I anyway, and why does it matter or not matter?”

….

Sometimes I wish I could just be a normal person who didn’t even care or who didn’t even wonder.

 

 

Stop Wishing – DO IT.

Stop Wishing – DO IT.
Stop wishing for the things you want and just start DOING the things you want.
Stop wishing you could travel more – go sell some used crap you no longer need and book a cheap ticket to the closest place you’ve never been to. Even if it’s just for one or two days. DO IT – TRAVEL. Stop wishing.

Stop wishing you had a better body and START working out. Right now. Stop reading this and do some jumping jacks, push ups, crunches and jog in place. Stop wishing. DO IT – WORK OUT.

Stop wishing you could eat better. PHYSICALLY STOP PUTTING CRAP IN YOUR MOUTH. Put 1 sugar in your coffee instead of 500. Eat carrots and celery for snacks instead of a snicker bar. Stop wishing. DO IT – EAT HEALTHY.

Stop wishing you could go back to school. Use your time to go online and search for schools, financial aid, scholarships, payment plans, loans, programs, alternative methods to the education you want. Stop wishing. DO IT – GO TO SCHOOL.

Stop wishing you had the courage to leave your unhealthy relationships behind. Speak your mind and walk away without turning back. Stop wishing. DO IT – EMBRACE COURAGE.

What are you wishing for? Whatever it is – Stop wishing. DO IT!

Are you doing it yet?
#toughlove

Finding Purpose in the Little-Big Things

Sometimes I get down on myself because of where I am in life. I get stuck thinking that I should be doing more, accomplishing more, believing that through my accomplishments I will be finally fulfilled. I keep thinking that once I have a high paying job, a nice house, a nice car, a couple of degrees on my wall then I could look at all the things I’ve achieved and say “OK. You did it. Your life is now perfect.”

Where did I get this idea? Why do I think that fulfillment comes from external accomplishments?
I mean, sure externals can bring fulfillment, but if you’re like me struggling and straining through the externals in hope that your strain will later bring fulfillment – then maybe we need to refocus ourselves.

I keep thinking I need to achieve some big thing so I can prove to myself and the world that I matter.
But today I woke up with the realization that I don’t need to do anything in order to matter. I already matter simply because I exist.

I realize that I need to appreciate the little things and that these little things are really big things in and of themselves. I was wallowing around thinking I have no purpose because I work a “meaningless job” at a storage company. Then I realized “Hey, wait a minute. I do have a purpose. I am the storage girl. My purpose right now is to be the best storage girl I can be. My purpose is to smile and give good service to my customers and to make sure that everyone who comes in looking for a place to keep their stuff is helped in a warm and friendly manner. I am the storage girl for now and this is my purpose right now.”

I was undermining myself simply because I didn’t feel like my job was meaningful. But it is. Even if I was flipping burgers at McDonald’s, that is meaningful too. If flipping burgers is my job, I simply need to know that for now my purpose is to be the best burger flipper I can be! Or if I am a cleaning lady, my purpose right now is to just be the best cleaning lady I can be.

I realize now that no matter what position I am in, whether it is president or servant, I have a purpose to fulfill in my particular place in time. I need to know that my purpose right now is whatever that purpose is right now and that I am not less than anyone else simply because of the title I hold.

I realize also that I have a tendency to compare myself to others making me feel inferior because I believe I should also be doing what others are doing. I need to understand that I am ME and not OTHERS. And that whatever I do in time is just as meaningful as what other people are doing because in the grand scheme of things we are all operating for some greater purpose – to move forward in time.

I need to improve my faith. I need to learn to trust that tomorrow will be ok and that I will be provided for. I don’t need to work-out the future, I just need to be here right now fulfilling this very purpose in time. I need to understand that my worth is not defined by my accomplishments even though that’s what our society often wants us to believe. This kind of mentality only serves to discourage us when in truth we are all the same.

Ultimately, what I am saying is: This moment, right here, right now – this is my life. My life is not in some future place or in the past. My life is here and being here is my purpose. I don’t need to feel like I must accomplish some great thing in the future in order to feel great. I am great because I exist. Life has chosen me to come to be and to be is my primary purpose. What I do at any point in time is big. Just coming in to my job and helping people get their storage room is big. Life has all these little moments that make big things. Let’s marvel in the little-big things of every day life.

Just relax in this moment.
Let yourself know that this moment is enough.
Let yourself know that tomorrow will be ok.
Let yourself be here and now.
Whatever action needs to be taken in this moment, take it.
If no action needs to be taken, just be.
You don’t need to plan your whole life.
You don’t need to compare yourself to others.
You are enough just as you are in this moment.
Your presence is a big accomplishment in and of itself.
Marvel in the little-big things.
Your purpose is to be and that is very, very big.

Filing the Void

I lived with a sense that something was missing. Although my basic needs were met (food, shelter, clothes, enough money to survive and sit here to write this blog) there was still something inside me that was crying and saying “it’s not enough. Something is missing.”

In my love life, I often blamed my partner for the void.
“I am sad because you are watching more TV than paying attention to me.”
“If only you would do X, Y, Z, then I will feel loved.”

Then I began to realize something I never realized before.
I realized that I blamed the world for the void.

“I don’t have my dream job. That is why I am sad.”
“My partner isn’t this X, Y, Z, way. That is why I feel unloved.”
“My father abandoned me as a child. That is why I have attachment issues.”

I also realized something else.
I realized that I wanted the world to take responsibility for my happiness.
I wanted everyone to do for me so I wouldn’t have to do for myself.

I wanted my job to make me happy because I didn’t want to be happy myself.
I wanted my partner to love me unconditionally so I didn’t have to love myself unconditionally.
I wanted others to be there so I didn’t have to just be with myself.

Once I realized this, I was able to learn the meaning of “Love yourself.”
I realized that if I wanted to be loved, all I needed was to be love.
If I wanted happiness, all I needed was to be happy.
If I wanted company, all I need was to be with myself.

Embodying this new notion has enabled me to be less afraid.
Now, when my partner is watching TV instead of giving me attention, I don’t interpret his behavior as a statement of non-love.
Now, although I still do not have my dream job, I do not interpret that as a sad thing because I haven chosen to BE happy not because I have something or another, but because happiness lives in me. Happiness has become a living entity in me; its being lives in me. If sadness tries to invade my being, I can more easily channel happiness back to me.
When I think of being abandoned and that makes me afraid, I remember that I can still have me.
I can still talk to myself. I know you might think that the idea of talking to yourself is crazy, but it really isn’t. We talk to ourselves all the time. When you have to make a choice between two things and you sit there analyzing which would be best for yourself – who are you analyzing with? Yourself. So you are constantly in communication with your being. I have learned to be my own friend.
It’s such a cool experience. You literally just communicate with yourself and yourself teaches you so many things! Everything I am writing here, I discovered through talking to myself. I have told myself that I needed to improve and to fill the void inside, and my-self responded with a new way of being.

I told myself: “I am.”
“Hm. I am? I am what.”
“I just am. and whatever else I wanna be, I am that too.”
“Oh, wow. I never thought about it that way.”
“I know!! aren’t I cool?”
“Yes. you are if you say you are.”

So I choose to BE HAPPY.
I choose to BE LOVE.
I choose to be COMPANY.
I choose to be WHOLE.
I choose to be  ALL THAT I AM. AS I AM. IF I AM. WHEN I AM.

When I am sad, I no longer tell myself “don’t be sad.”
If I am sad, then f#ck it – I am sad. That’s what I choose to be. And I will be sad for as long as I feel like being sad.

But since being sad doesn’t feel so “good” for me, but being happy does…I choose to be happy more often than sad.

How are you today?
Remember, however you are, you are because you choose to be whatever you are right now.

Life is Now

I used to think that once I got my own place, found the right person, finished school and got the right job, life would start.

I set goals for myself and once I achieve them I quickly turn to myself and say “Ok! Now what?”
I finished school… Ok. Now what?
I found a partner whom I love… Ok. Now what?
I have a nice apartment… Ok. Now what?

There is always this sense of having to do more. Get more. Accomplish more.

Accomplishing my tasks gives me a sense of fulfillment, which is great, but this sense only lasts temporarily and soon enough I am asking myself “now what?” again.

Then I finally realized something profound. I realized that life is here. Life is now.

Life does not start when I accomplish something; It starts when I take my first breath and it will end when I take my last.

I have arrived. I am here and this moment is my life.

I don’t need anything else. I am complete.
In this moment I am whole. There is nothing that I can accomplish to make me more complete because everything that I am, I am when I just breath.

I realized that I am not my name. I am not my car. I am not my house. I am not my possessions. I am not my education. I am not my achievements.
All these things play their function in our world — but when I derive my sense of self from them, I will always feel at lack. I will always feel the need to accomplish more because anything external to me is subject to time and change.
When I rest in the knowledge that “I AM” and my being is sufficient, I no longer need to seek fulfillment in things or in titles because I already am fulfilled.

My life can express itself through different experiences, but it’s not the experiences that define my life. My life defines itself through its presence.

Sometimes I still get lost and captured by identifying myself with the external world and achieving in order to feel at ease and accomplished – but the more I practice just being present the more I realize I am whole now.

I am free now.
I am at peace now.
I am enough now.
Life will not start when I achieve a goal – life IS and will continue to BE here and now.

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