It’s inherently human to fill life up with things to do, people to see, places to go and goals to achieve. We can become overly focused on busy-ness as we feel it gives our lives shape, structure and definition.
As a new decade begins, it’s important to pause for a moment to look back at the decade we’ve just experienced. For a great many souls, this past decade has been one of the most transformative and enlightening ever, but for a great many more it has also been one of the most challenging.
Life can be unquestionably hard at times as we try to navigate the twists, turns, dead-ends, nooks, crannies, hills and valleys. We never know what’s around the next corner and although we may try to be as prepared as possible we can never truly know what’s coming as life is unexpected and unpredictable.
There is so much pressure in modern living: unanswered emails banging on the door, a ‘read’ notification on a message implying the sender is being ignored if not immediately responded to and the constant noise and light all around. Creating some breathing space allows each of us to breathe more deeply into life and to step back from being caught up in the hamster wheel of keeping on keeping on so we can begin to see the bigger picture once again.
I think a great many of us will be relieved to see the end of 2017; it was a year of stormy extremes, both within and in the world around us. It was as though the very fabric of our being was being ripped up in order to be re-shaped and re-defined. There were times of profoundly difficult emotions, yet there were also moments of great joy as well
It’s easy to reach the end of a year realising we’ve failed to achieve the goals we set twelve months before. We may take a deep breath and then resolve, once again, that this year will be the year we finally make those dreams come true. Yet, maybe looking at goals in such a way is setting ourselves up for failure?
December is a time to look back with warmth and tenderness, to celebrate the good things and to gently embrace the challenges with love rather than criticising and judging ourselves for not doing better.
I’m not sure if it’s just me, but, over recent years, I've become increasingly aware that the world is growing ever fuller of perfectionists. By this, I don’t mean people trying to live a better and more enriching life or trying to find new ways to live spiritually, I mean a collection of souls presenting themselves as the ‘complete package’:
I’m not sure if the words have, as yet, been invented to describe the current moment; there are highs and lows, there are jolts backwards and leaps forwards, there are upward shifts and downward falls. This goes way and beyond a fairground ride to a profound journey within, reaching deeply into the nooks and crannies of the soul.
As the great big washing machine of life continues to spin, rinse, hum, whir and jiggy across the floor, there is a great deal of bewilderment, bemusement, perplexity and disorientation as we each try to make sense of the shifts and find a moment to take a breath.