This is your place in the labyrinth.
I ran across this article by Martha Beck today and thought it was just was so perfect, such a great reminder for all of us. I hope it blesses you today. Remember, we’re in this together.
"As every life coach knows, the way we do anything is the way we do everything. The same thoughts that make me squirm in the labyrinth torture me when I’m writing, emailing, even sleeping. I should be going faster, getting somewhere. I should have more to show for this. I shouldn’t have to double back, to revisit old emotional issues, to wipe the same damn kitchen counter every day. These thoughts burble along just under the surface of my consciousness every day. They make me slightly anxious—okay, some days irrationally terrified—and lend a driven quality to moments when I could be relaxed and present.
I’ve heard the same comments from countless people, all schooled to the same obsession with forward progress. We set goals, draw flowcharts, march forward, criticize ourselves if we have to go back, if the same old stuff comes back to haunt us. We want to be DONE with things: the chronic pain, the haunting doubt, the bad relationship patterns, the grief of loss. We want to solve the maze and get out, to the place where we imagine there will be no problems to solve.
The labyrinth is teaching me to question the bits of driven, linear, achievement-based dysfunction that can make me miserable in a life of incredible blessings and good fortune. We didn’t enter life to get it done. There is no place not worth revisiting. We double back to find the pieces of ourselves that still clutch the same issues like a baby clutching its pacifier. Compassion invited us to this unbearably repetitive, slow, complex path of self-discovery, to show us that only when we surrender our idea of how things should be going do we notice that the entire thing is breathtakingly beautiful…
Today, if you’re confronting an issue for the ten thousandth time, or feeling that your life is going nowhere, or panicking over how little you’ve achieved, stop and breathe. You’re not falling behind on some linear race through time. You’re walking the labyrinth of life. Yes, you’re meant to move forward, but almost never in a straight line. Yes, there’s an element of achievement, of beginning and ending, but those are minor compared to the element of being here now. In the moments you stop trying to conquer the labyrinth of life and simply inhabit it, you’ll realize it was designed to hold you safe as you explore what feels dangerous. You’ll see that you’re exactly where you’re meant to be, meandering along a crooked path that is meant to lead you not onward, but inward.
As Proust wrote, ‘The real voyage of discovery consists not in seeking new landscapes but in having new eyes.’ Stop now, right now, and look around you. This is your place in the labyrinth. There is no place else you need to be. See with eyes that aren’t fixed on goals, or focused on flaws. You are part of the endless, winding beauty. And as you learn to see the dappled loveliness of your life, as your new eyes help you begin loving the labyrinth, you’ll slowly come to realize that the labyrinth was made solely for the purpose of loving you.”
Do you really want to look back on your life and see how wonderful it could have been had you not been afraid to live it?
Ray LaMontagne and the Pariah Dogs—The Devil’s in the Jukebox
Just so good.
One of the funny things about life is realizing things about yourself, qualities that you have that need to be put in check occasionally. What I mean about it being funny is that sometimes those very qualities are the things you like best about yourself. It’s what makes you YOU.
I’m one of those people who can’t just grab a bag of curved fritos and bean dip on the way to a potluck. I pretty much refuse. Instead, I overcommit and decide to make at least one, possibly even two time-consuming homemade dishes that I’ve never attempted before because it seems fun, and I’m just constantly trying to do too much. (Not just with potlucks, with life in general.) I have to make a conscious effort to reel myself in and be realistic with my abilities and time frame. I do things like paint my nails 5 minutes before I’m supposed to be out the door. I’ve gotten better in recent years (probably because my husband puts his foot down and forces me to relax about things) but I still find myself
all over the place
so much of the time. I want to do and be a billion things in a single day. And honestly, many times I feel like that’s OKAY. I might even say more people should be that way. More people should be unrealistic. What do our dreams mean if we don’t even believe in them ourselves, after all? (Obviously, I’m talking about the bigger things in life now and not painting my nails.)
I’m 5 months pregnant and working full-time, and have recently started a fashion and lifestyle blog with my best friend. Also, because I need more to do, I’m opening up an Etsy shop to sell handmade all-natural soaps. It’s just not enough to grow a set of limbs inside me. There is a world out there to be explored and ambitions to be accomplished. Of course, I am in the 2nd trimester, which is known as the “sweet spot” of pregnancy. I have all this energy to follow through with my lofty notions (and even come up with more!)… I guess we’ll see how it all pans out once this basketball becomes an overfilled beach ball. Until then, full steam ahead…
M is for Maya Angelou
Poet, writer, mother, inspiration and a force of nature. Read more…
we meet again, floral print bodysuit.
The 90s are back with full force, and after almost a year of not buying into the idea, I’m actually falling back in love with denim overalls again, and I nearly bought a pair of overall shorts during my lunch break. The only problem is, I don’t have any British Knights to go with them.
Does anyone else smell Sunflowers by Elizabeth Arden?