I can guarantee; your life (mine as well) simply isn’t simple.
We have to create space for the Simple – the way life is – well, it isn’t conducive to simplicity.
Simple is actually the first word that comes to mind when I think about the summer vacations of my childhood. I remember feeling like summer would last forever, and I can close my eyes right now and be that little girl again, laying in the warm grass, looking up through the branches of one of our giant oaks, watching the rays of sunlight play hide and seek. Soft whispers of light, vanishing, then reappearing from behind the leaves whenever the giant oak was coaxed by the breeze.
We all crave this kind of simplicity, because this is the avenue to so much more. Our souls yearn for what’s simple, and yet we ignore this yearning, the urgent need to forgo being so caught up all the time, and instead we cram in more, even at the expense of our own health. We cram in more because we are afraid of what life would be like if we did less, had less, scheduled less. We are afraid that if life were simpler, we might actually have some time to lie down in the warm grass and be with ourselves.
We might have to really tune in and feel without being distracted by all the things, all the work, all the “not enough time”, and all the stress…. We might have to admit that what we really need cannot be met by doing more, but rather what we really need will only be met by stepping out of the insane expectations we hold for ourselves and by finally relaxing into letting life be simpler.
If given the opportunity to just be, we might crack ourselves wide open to our own vulnerability, and there’s nothing more frightening than being vulnerable. However, it’s also the only way to finally, and wholeheartedly step into ourselves in such a way that we start honoring and creating space to be exactly whom we know we are intended to be.
Just thinking about all of this could bring up a lot of emotion, many changes might need to be made, a lot of decisions, a lot of pain might surface, but with that there is undoubtedly going to also come a lot of joy. This is the gift of the human experience after all, the ability to experience it all…
So, I challenge you this summer to let your soul find what’s simpler. Make the choice to not be so scheduled. Say goodbye to things, plans, and situations that no longer serve you. Say no to things, plans, and situations that fill up space when you could instead start connecting, start being alone, be with loved ones, and then vow to notice the little things right in front of you that bring you joy vs. chasing after the big things that only tend to escape you again and again once you get there.
Dreaming big is fantastic, but you have to be present in the small steps that get you there in order to ever enjoy the outcome.
Vow to let yourself feel, be with what comes up, without judgment, just notice, and let it be what it is. We need to avoid distracting from your experiences – we even distract from our joy because we know it’s fleeting, so in order to protect ourselves from feeling much of anything for too long anyway, we over-schedule, over-eat, over-do, over-stress, over-train, over-gossip, and over-dramatize because the alternative is letting it all just be and feeling it all, and doing nothing about it but choosing to be at peace with whatever the current experience might be.
This is frightening with a capital F as in “Fudge That” – I know that fear very well because I’ve been there, but taking the plunge; well it’s so worth it. So so worth it.
Making life simpler is not failure at being able to do it all. It’s actually the opposite. It’s winning at commitment to real self-care, and creating this kind of space for yourself is possible – even 5 minutes a day of meditation is a smell step forward in learning how to create the presence and capability and clarity needed to start making this kind of space for yourself. Meditation helps to grow a very important mental muscle which will allow you to notice what’s happening around you rather than spinning around like a helicopter out of control, watching the world come up to meet you in a really rude and ruthless sort of way, and all you do is just stay caught up in the whirling madness just waiting for the inevitable crash. That’s no way to live and yet we stay on the spinning, inevitably crashing helicopter anyway, despite our parachute being right in arm’s length.
When we can notice and not get caught up, that’s where we can make decisions that align with who we are, vs. just reacting without thinking.
Making this kind of commitment to quiet down and really take care of ourselves; well it’s hard, and it’s scary, but life is really incredibly short and we need to simplify or we will whirl through this life without taking a single moment to remember that what matters most IS the moment. This moment. Only this moment. It’s challenging to focus on life’s one harsh reality – that this moment might truly be all we’ve got.
So let’s vow to let our souls relax more into Simple and stay open to what may come from there.