This Burning Question really resonated with me: What do you want that you have already have?
- Limitless capacity! I know in my bones that I can do absolutely anything that calls me. The scarier it is, the more resistance I feel, the more stubborn, dogged and obsessed I become. I’ve got this!
- Time. For the longest time I felt my age (or lack there of) was a problem. Now I see that I am blessed to have clarity before I’m thirty.
- Direction. I have no idea, yet, what my legacy will be. I do know the general trajectory and the moment I got my compass pointing north the universe propelled me so fast the world around me blurred.
- Happiness. I am not happy 100% of the time with every facet of my life. I am human. And my soul sighs when I lay my head on my pillow at night after a solid days work.
- Support. I was told in my teens in a reading that I would meet my life partner early. That the universe had other issues for me to be working on in my adult life aside from finding my true love. That medium was right. And I am blessed to have wed the most supportive man to ever have taken a breath. Without him, that capacity would not be limitless.
- Self knowledge. I am finding my blind spots and sore spots at a rate of knots these days. Such a blessing to have a light shined into the recesses of my psyche.
I am eternally grateful to be living in this particular moment in time. Never before in history has the wisdom of the ages, and avant guard research, been so readily available to us.
Clarification. Illumination. Confirmation. Inspiration.
The greatest teacher known to man (experience) taught me a long time ago now, that leisure time and material possessions do not create happiness. Instead I felt happiest, and most alive when I was doing things that drew me to them by way of an invisible lasso around my heart.
Even when those things scared me. Especially when it made me feel vulnerable.
Dr. Brene Brown has research now to show I am not a freak. And that vulnerability and happiness have a causal relationship.
Intuition. Experience. Personal truth. Fits into the universal puzzle effortlessly when all the wisdom of the ages is there for the picking.
Through the view-finder
No image is objective.
The frame, composition, subject of each image has been selected either deliberately or by default of who the photographer is. It is all but impossible for two individuals to take an identical photo. Even, no espeically, if they are trying to. Our perspective is totally unique, we cannot escape that.
I vividly remember
arguing passionately debating with one of my tutors at University about this very subject. Because an undoctored image is a recording of an event she felt it objective. I still cannot agree. An image tells us more about the photographer than its subject.
Only the photographer knows what lies outside of the frame.
I wonder, with the profoliration of seemingly free image sharing (flikr, Facebook, Instagram, Twitter) and the current trend favouring images of the everyday; what story are we really telling? And for whom?
I like to think, despite our collective shift to ‘frictionless sharing’, that our lives, real intimacy, real moments, the spaces between where our guard drops and we forget we are ever on-show, fall outside the frame. Because they are composed that way. By training our perspective, so integral to our inner lives, to capture what is SFW (Safe for work) & in keeping with our preferred image what are we doing to our unique perspective?
How will we feel about our life in pictures as we age? Will the urge to compose an image so that the undesirables are outside the frame become so ingrained that we look at our own lives through Facebook’s eyes?
What do you think?
Best Advice Ever
I have been lucky enough to have received some amazing advice over the years.
I had a few wise-beyond-comprehension mentors, spent hours (who am I kidding, probably years) reading everything from ancient texts to modern productivity gurus and I am given daily truths from the horses’ mouth (i.e. my 3 year old).
The single piece of advice I have received that has, quite literally, shaped every decision and action I have taken since, is this:
Choose who you are [in the face to the situation].
Or put another way; hold space for whatever is in front of you. This advice, if you have the heart to implement it, changes everything. The statement alone puts you in choice. For me, situations I had been playing victim in, became the perfect opportunity to be my highest self. Situations where my ego threatened to run rampant, I could choose to be classy and graceful instead. Situations where I was, let face it, shit-scared, I was empowered to put on my big-girl-panties.
As Sir Winston Churchill once said; ‘The kite flies highest against the wind.’
My relationship to excitement is complicated.
I am naturally cautious. Risk management is the lens through which I view most things.
Spontaneous, I am not. Passionate. That’s me.
When I become empassioned, and that passion spills out into meaningful action in the world… I get excited. Real excited. Genuine I can’t sit still, let alone sleep kind of excited.
That is where I am right now. I nearly fell asleep standing up in the middle of a sunny afternoon today. I swore I would get an early night. And then, Dandelion got all exciting. Launching a thank you to our supporters, launching a new website. Preparing for our upcoming Start Some Good campaign.
Excitement has become my new barometer; If I am excited then I am listening to my heart and doing the work.
Super (S)hero name
Burning question: What is your super hero name?
My Super hero name is Compassion Champion.
I cannot witness suffering without being moved to help. Even if the extent of that help is a silent prayer.
I wield no weapons other than loving kindness, witnessing your journey and compassionate action.
Don’t be fooled, I am not weak. Compassion & gentleness take great strength. Stronger than the survival instinct. Deeper than the ego. As universal as music, and just as compelling. Compassion is the strongest force in the universe.
I am prone to moments of sadness, contemplation & empathy followed by great bursts of action. I know in my bones that everybody has it in them to change a life. And sometimes the simplest of actions cause avalanches of change.
I would like to stop apologising. Well, that or stop doing the laundry. Anybody know a laundry fairy?
I apologise to the point my husband tells me to ‘Stop apologising!’ to which my immediate response is, of course, ‘Sorry.’ It isn’t apologising for imaginary infractions that I’d like to stop. (Though that is a habit I would like to kick to the curb.) I would like to stop apologising for being me.
I would like to stop apologising for my labour experiences. I loved labour, I have never felt more empowered in my life. If that sounds crazy to you then perhaps I am broadening your mind a little. I’m not sorry.
I would like to stop apologising for breastfeeding my boys. On demand. Beyond age 1. Gasp.
On the subject of breasts, I’d like to stop apologising for their size. I didn’t order them, and I am considering charging them rent.
I would like to stop apologising for co-sleeping. It isn’t for everybody. I don’t pretend it is. I’ve done my research, I practice safe bed-sharing. It is my choice. Full stop.
I would like to stop apologising for my taste in music. Fleetwood Mack rule!
I would like to stop apologising for caring.
I would like to stop apologising for the state of my house. It’s clean, and (mostly) tidy. Today I mopped the floor and cursed minutes later as the boys ran in, muddy feet and all, holding a grasshopper. Sigh.
I would like to stop apologising for being a stay at home mum. No I haven’t gone ‘back to work’ yet. I love being with the boys and I have found ways of contributing without a job. It doesn’t mean I judge working mothers, or think my lot is better than those with amazing careers.
I would like to stop apologising for not getting drunk. Drunk me is like an insanely evil twin who schemes to ensure I wake up the morning after thinking “Oh God, what did I do?!?” Quitting drinking before Facebook took off was my best decision ever!
What would you like to stop doing?
Working through Danielle La Porte’s Spark Kit (formerly Firestarter Sessions) one of the exercises is a ‘stream of consciousness’ to clarify the why of a project. Below is mine:
It’s about solidarity, compassion and empathy.
It’s about living from the heart.
It’s saying that one child dying unnecessarily is too many.
It’s about doing what we already do, & amplifying the effects.
It’s about dignity & paying it forward.
It’s about protecting our young & encircling the vulnerable.
It’s about seeing through the differences & helping another mother as she faces unimaginable decisions.
It’s empowering mothers & protecting children.
It’s creating room for our ferocity and righteous anger and using them constructively.
It’s dripping the drops that hollow the stone.
I wrote this before I founded Dandelion Support Network, around 8 months ago when i was still thinking about Nameless NFP. And although my focus is closer to home, and more about serving impoverished and vulnerable Australian families, it all still rings true.
How blessed am I to have created work that is an extension of my hearts desire?
Your fears are tissue paper thin. I have read it hundreds of times. Your fears are tissue paper thin. I tought I understood.
I was wrong.
I thought that I had faced my fears before. And to an extent I had. But I was still inclined to sit in my small risk-adverse box. So I was obviously afraid of something more.
Your fears are tissue paper thin. Yes! Your fears are, mostly, baseless. Yes! The courage it requires to stand in front of them, to simply inhabit their space, is immense.
I thought it would feel like bravery, to move past my fears. That it would take courage, will, inner fight.
I was wrong.
What it felt like was responsibility. What it felt like was defiance. What it felt like was coming home.
What I havent read in the books is that once you shred that tissue paper, everything changes. Everything.
Obstacles of the past now look like interesting challenges. Impossible looks like a 5 year plan. and playing small feels like I am cheating myself, and the world.
I feel softer, less stressed, less pressured, more gentle & more at home in my own skin. I have less to prove and more power to prove it with. Results are coming easily and I am less attached to how they look.
Your fears are tissue paper thin. Pushing through them changes you to your very soul.