Smooth Sailing

Posted on Dec 22, 2017 in Self-Help

The house can’t always be neat, I’m not going to always be on time and plans wont always come to fruition. Sometimes it flows, but life, it can also be downright messy. 

One of the thrills of this earthly experience is the process of unwrapping each day. To unveil what was once an unknown can be quite joyful and exciting, yes, but it can also be quite disappointing and scary.

In the face of this fear I’ve found it helpful to remember three things:

1. LIFE IS NOT MEANT TO BE SMOOTH SAILING.

  • We get ourselves into mental and emotional trouble when we act out a kind of entitlement to that smooth course.
  • “Why is this happening to me?… I shouldn’t be getting sick… I can’t believe he would say that to ME… I shouldn’t have had that accident… I got stuck in traffic again, geez just my luck!… Oh my heart, I got dumped!… I didn’t get hired for that job I wanted…This cable guy is keeping me waiting all day!… It’s so hard to do this long-distance relationship thing… I got another parking ticket… This is so unfair!”
    There are endless waves in the ocean and they wont always roll in our direction.
  • Over time I’ve observed how commonplace it has become to craft stories around how disruptive circumstances might even be personal punishments. “I did something wrong and this is what I deserve.” Or, “Why is this happening to me, I thought I was doing everything right? If I do things a certain way, I am to avoid pain.”
    Alternatively we may use our situation as food to nourish some complex of our victimhood. “With such an injustice there must be a force acting against me!” Or “This happened and then that happened… One thing after another, it’s like endless suffering over here for me!”
  • These “inconvenient” circumstances however are not meant as punishments, in fact they are gifts.
  • Life hasn’t been designed to be 100% smooth sailing. That is not why we are here. Challenges arise to keep us growing – like the next level to a video game or the work that comes in advancing a grade – they keep us interested and engaged. Ultimately human beings find fulfillment in progress, we find satisfaction in problem solving, we find appreciation for that which keeps us curious. If you stay awake, with eyes wide enough to see it, life will be the best game you will ever play.

 

2. YOU HAVE EVERYTHING YOU NEED TO DEAL WITH WHAT IS UP IN YOUR LIFE RIGHT NOW.

  • You are always capable of handling your present situation. I promise.
  • These waters may be choppy but you can navigate them because everything up until this point in your life has been a training for this moment.

 

3. GRATITUDE WILL GUIDE YOU.

  • In the darkest hour find your flint of gratitude and then even the smallest pieces of kindling will do.
  • Caught by an unfavorable event it’s easy to become swallowed by despair. Our light dims and our vision narrows. What can we do to regain our luminance? We can voice that which is going well.
  • “I’m so appreciative of the warm water I have to take a shower. I’m so thankful for the friends who have come to my aid. I’m so grateful for my able body. Wow, I have a Wifi signal right now and the infinite resource of the internet, isn’t that amazing!”
  • Start where you are and be authentic. Breathe deeper into these appreciations and you might even find gratitude for the very moment of discomfort that was your trigger – “Thank you for THIS moment. I trust it will be a teaching. I trust that the universe is acting in my favor.”

 

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One Comment

  1. Love your colorfully simple way of articulating points and concepts. I appreciate these grounding quick reads of reflection too. Thanks Kat!

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