If you knew – what would you do?

This question turned up in my Daily Forwards Step. There was also this quote:

Be master of your petty annoyances and conserve your energies for the big, worthwhile things. It isn’t the mountain ahead that wears you out – it’s the grain of sand in your shoe.
Robert Service

Question: If you knew that in one year you would leave the planet, what would you do today?

Opening The Door

DailyOM today is about Fighting Against Our Gifts, here is part of it.

As human beings we often have a tendency to fight against using our natural gifts. Many stories of success start with an individual who is ignoring the call of his or her inborn abilities. There are many possible reasons for this resistance, from fear that the calling will be too difficult to a disbelief in the very work one is being asked to do. We may feel too small, too distracted by other people’s ideas about what we should do, or too uninformed. Whatever the case, the resistance to actualizing ourselves has very concrete consequences, and many of us have been called out of hiding by an illness or a twist of fate that unequivocally dismantled our resistance. In other words, the universe knocks, and if we don’t answer it knocks louder.

The first step on the journey to our calling in life is to listen to our internal voices and respond to the knocking universe at the door. As we do, the symptoms and anxieties that have haunted us will fade into the background, replaced by opportunities, both big and small, to open the door to what we are truly here to do.

Source: DailyOM

This was originally posted at another (now extinct) blog of mine.

Letting The Curves Take You

DailyOM today is about control, here is part of it.

Trying to maintain control in this life is a bit like trying to maintain control on a roller coaster. The ride has its own logic and is going to go its own way, regardless of how tightly you grip the bar. There is a thrill and a power in simply surrendering to the ride and fully feeling the ups and downs of it, letting the curves take you rather than fighting them. When you fight the ride, resisting what’s happening at every turn, your whole being becomes tense and anxiety is your close companion. When you go with the ride, accepting what you cannot control, freedom and joy will inevitably arise.

We can give in to our fear and anxiety, or we can surrender to this great mystery with courage. When we see people on a roller coaster, we see that there are those with their faces tight with fear and then there are those that smile broadly, with their hands in the air, carried through the ride on a wave of freedom and joy. This powerful image reminds us that often the only control we have is choosing how we are going to respond to the ride.

Source: DailyOM

This was originally posted at another (now extinct) blog of mine.

Catch the trade winds in your sails

Brian Clark at Copyblogger has a very interesting post titled The Nasty Four-Letter Word That Keeps You From Writing that hooked me because I am in a situation where I have a chance to really change what I do for a living. Brian writes:

based on my personal experience, there’s a nasty demon hiding behind the excuses we make. This four-letter word represents a condition we don’t like to admit to ourselves, much less utter in polite conversation.

Yep, it’s the “F” word.

Fear.

Fear affects us all more than we care to admit

Brian’s article is about fear in connection with writing but his post is valid in many areas of life. He mentions five different fears, the key ones (to me) are fear of failure and fear of risk.

Under fear of failure Brian writes:

Countless psychological studies have shown that the fear of failure is the number one barrier to personal success. We fear failure because we don’t separate tasks from ourselves, and therefore our self-esteem is at risk every time we attempt to do anything we really want to achieve.

If we try and fail then we can get up and try again. But if we do not even try then we lock ourselves in where we are now.

This is a quote worth remembering:
Failure seldom stops you. What stops you is the fear of failure.

In the part about fear of risk Brian writes:

Is it really better to be safe than sorry? Sometimes, yes. But when it comes to your writing dreams and goals, being safe is a fate worse than death. Not only do your dreams die, but you get to live the rest of your life knowing it.

Remove the word ‘writing’ before dreams and this statement goes anywhere. Dreams are nice but until they turn into actions they remain dreams.

A while back I came across a quote that says a lot:

Twenty years from now you will be more disappointed by the things that you didn’t do than by the ones you did do. So throw off the bowlines. Sail away from the safe harbor. Catch the trade winds in your sails. Explore. Dream. Discover. (Mark Twain)

The feeling of safety makes us often hesitate and take the easy way out (stay in the harbor, no risk, no failure) and not take the exciting way (leave for the high sea, take risks). I think I shall go and check my sails…

This was originally posted at another (now extinct) blog of mine.

Creating a Fork in the Road

The DailyOm for today is titled Creating a Fork in the Road and is about using a fresh year as a fresh start. I like the idea of opening up to several oppurtunities.

The end of the article says:

In the ancient Babylonian, Chinese, and Celtic traditions, the period marking the transition from the old year to the new was viewed as a struggle between chaos and order, in which order always prevailed. Your belief that you, too, can banish chaos and integrate your dreams, desires, and goals more fully into your life will give you the determination and fortitude to change your life for the better.

This was originally posted at another (now extinct) blog of mine.

Going With The Flow

This text, Following The Current, came today and goes well with Walking Through When Doors Open that came the other day.

The expression going with the flow is a metaphor that applies to navigating a river. When we go with the flow, we follow the current of the river rather than push against it. People who go with the flow may be interpreted as lazy or passive, but to truly go with the flow requires awareness, presence, and the ability to blend one’s own energy with the prevailing energy. Going with the flow doesn’t mean we toss our oars into the water and kick back in the boat, hoping for the best. Going with the flow means we let go of our individual agenda and notice the play of energy all around us. We tap into that energy and flow with it, which gets us going where we need to go a whole lot faster than resistance will.

Going with the flow doesn’t mean that we don’t know where we’re going; it means that we are open to multiple ways of getting there. We are also open to changing our destination, clinging more to the essence of our goal than to the particulars. We acknowledge that letting go and modifying our plans is part of the process. Going with the flow means that we are aware of an energy that is larger than our small selves and we are open to working with it, not against it.

Many of us are afraid of going with the flow because we don’t trust that we will get where we want to go if we do. This causes us to cling to plans that aren’t working, stick to routes that are obstructed, and obsess over relationships that aren’t fulfilling. When you find yourself stuck in these kinds of patterns, do yourself a favor and open to the flow of what is rather than resisting it. Trust that the big river of your life has a plan for you and let it carry you onward. Throw overboard those things that are weighing you down. Be open to revising your maps. Take a deep breath and move into the current.

Source: DailyOM

Walking Through When Doors Open

This text came from DailyOM and it rings true to me.

When a door opens, walk through it. Trust that the door has opened for a reason and you have been guided to it. Sometimes we have a tendency to overanalyze or agonize over the decision, but it is quicker to simply go through the door and discover what’s there as that’s the only way to know. Even if it doesn’t seem right at first, opening this door may lead to another door that will take us where we need to go.

Doors open when the time is right for us to enter a new space, metaphorically speaking, and we can have faith that walking through is the right thing to do. Sometimes we linger in the threshold because we are afraid of leaving our old life for a life we know nothing about. We may have voices inside of our heads that try to hold us back or people in our lives saying discouraging things. These voices, internal and external, are known as threshold spirits, and they express all the fears and doubts that arise at the beginning of a new life. Nevertheless, none of these voices can hold us back, and they will fall silent as soon as we cross the threshold.

There are many doors that open in the course of our lives, leading us into new relationships, jobs, friendships, and creative inspirations. Our lives up to this point are the result of all the doors we have walked through, and our continued growth depends on our willingness to keep moving into new spaces. Every time we walk through an open door, we create a sense memory that encourages us to move into the new fearlessly. When we enter the new space, we almost always feel a thrill and a new feeling of confidence, in ourselves and in the universe. We have stepped across the threshold into a new life.

This was originally posted at another (now extinct) blog of mine.

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