I spent a decent amount of time this morning thinking about happiness, contentment and connection. I was pondering how to cultivate them, how to recognize them and how to maintain them.
And, then I heard the news.
Another bombing and this time at a freaking MARATHON, a place where people come together to express their aliveness, push their boundaries and collectively celebrate human potential. To say this news is shocking, sad and disheartening would be an understatement. To say I have the answers would be ridiculous. To say I’m a little bit obsessed with how to take in this kind of information and continue to cultivate and maintain a sense of peace, safety, unity and justice would be the truth.
Obviously, I can only speak for myself about the ways I deal with this kind of tragedy, but it seems my thoughts on happiness and contentment are actually quite relevant right about now. What I know is this: my greatest and most authentic joy and contentment seem to occur in the simplest of moments. They occur when life slows down.
But when the hell does life slow down? It seems to only be getting faster, right? Right. So. From what I can see, it’s all about conscious choices—choosing to slow down and choosing simple moments. It’s about stopping to smell the flowers, lighting a candle even when you are eating alone, closing your eyes and taking a few deep breaths to connect to something greater than yourself, sending a letter to someone you love when they least expect it, making eye contact and offering a smile to a stranger, eating your food slowly, noticing the light, helping a friend move without expectation for a return favor, writing in your journal before you check your email, making art for the sake of making art, moving your body in a way that feels good, walking slowly in the woods and perhaps the most important thing…
giving thanks every damn time you can remember to give thanks.
Again, not rocket science, but I’m kind of getting that living well is not supposed to be complicated and it’s not supposed to be hard. In fact, I think it’s all about unraveling complications to expose simplicity and to live inside this place gracefully.
At least that’s what I’m banking on right about now.
I’ll sign off today with the words I posted after the school shootings in December. Feels pretty relative, once again.
“In the creative process, I believe that the greatest breakthroughs are often right on the other side of the greatest frustrations/fears/blocks/struggles. In order to reach the breakthroughs, we must be brave, keep doing the work and move through our fears as we follow our hearts and listen to our higher callings.
Tonight, I sit with a very heavy, but hopeful, heart praying and believing that there
is a great LIGHT waiting just on the other side of this immense darkness. Deep in my bones, I know this is TRUE.
We are collectively waking up from a very old paradigm of fear, sadness and destructive behavior. As we shed this old skin, massive shifts and tragedy will occur right alongside deep waves of healing, transformation and re-birth.
During these intense times of change, we MUST keep walking towards LOVE. Fear will only slow our evolution and hold us captive in it’s grips. Shine your hearts even brighter tonight as we collectively breathe in these changing times and send our light to all those who suffer. >>>>>> ♥ ♥ ♥”