There’s a lot of crazy sh*t going on these days, need we make a list?
We’re worried, stressed, restricted, and generally on edge a lot of the time. But we’re also finding opportunities to make positive choices that we didn’t always have time for – talking with people we care about more and deeply, we’re resting, we’re focusing on what matters, we’re reaching out to our neighbour’s to find out if they need help – this virus crisis is bringing out the best and worst in all of us and we’re each finding out what we individually are made of, the good, the bad and the ugly.
Does focusing on what feels positive for us individually mean we don’t care about anyone else? No.
In my experience, if we focus on negative energy, whether it be the news that’s pumped out on a daily basis through media and social, or the negative thinking that loops around in our head, we lose our sense of balance and end up feeling more fearful and hopeless. When we face stress and difficulties, we’re able to find positive ways to deal with them and eventually experience a state of ease, gratitude and joy.
The current overwhelm of crazy-sh*t is polarizing—the world seems split between right and left and we’re being told we have to think one way or we’re wrong, bad, worse. Sometimes the worry of saying or doing the ‘wrong’ thing, the concern of offending someone, causes us to avoid doing or saying anything. And when we silence ourselves, we are done.
With all this change happening everywhere, how can we find balance, stand in our own truth, and find the way to move forward in the best way possible individually and for our community? How do we remain stable within all the instability?
That’s one of the main questions I try to answer in my book, The Importance of Being Important: Putting Yourself in the Centre of Your Own Life, The first chapter is centred on the theme, Delusion vs Reality. (how timely right?) and generally asks’ ‘What happens when the real world comes crashing in and breaks apart everything we believed to be unbreakable?’ Over the next while I’ll be sharing readings from this chapter, ‘Nothing Stays the Same’, live-streaming Letters and Lyrics, and discussing ways to remain resonant and resilient in the new reality of old ways falling apart.
Is it possible to trust our instinct and remain true to ourselves when there is so much pressure to conform? It’s always been a challenge to feel good about ourselves, to feel confident and strong and know we have the ‘right’ to make our own happiness a priority. And now that we are all required to do our part to ‘fight the pandemic’, our individuality has been relegated to least important.
I believe that in this time of enforced isolation lies an unexpected gift, another opportunity to find out what we’re made of and the best we have to offer others.
For 5 months this past summer I lived on my own in a remote location. Aside from occasional company from visiting friends and family (and a small menagerie of one goat and three sheep), this period of time gave me the space and time to get clear on exactly how important it is to show up for myself. What does this mean? It means the more I attended to my individual needs the more I was able to find the way to contribute my best self to the world. Which seems counter-intuitive, on one hand, but at the same time aligns with the idea of ‘put your own oxygen mask on first before you help other people.’
Taking care of your life translates directly into knowing how best to take care of others.
When I started exploring this idea in my book and realized I was in fact responsible for the choices I make in my life, I also uncovered that it was the songs I’d written over the years that had been pointing me in this direction of living fully, with a balance of joy and strength of purpose.
I’ve been writing songs, as well as teaching for decades, always with the intention to encourage people to experience the depth of their creative power. And it turns out the old adage is true – we really do teach what we most need to learn.
The more people I work with to help them write or move through blocks to their imagination, the more I find proof of our need to express our creativity. Creativity really is what we need to live a full and meaningful life. And I know that getting in touch with our own creativity can be daunting, but it’s so so key to making sense of our lives and helping us to feel balanced. I’m convinced that everyone has the genius to be creative, which is why I talk about creativity a lot.
When I say ‘creativity’ I mean that we can be creative in the traditional sense, write songs, stories, poems, sing, draw, paint, sculpt. But we can also be creative in unexpected ways, having a relationship with our gut instinct, understanding what is right for us, knowing what feels right in our body, get out of our head and into our heart.
You truly are the most important person in your life. You are creative, and expressing that creativity is worthy of your time, even in this crazy-as-sh*t time we’re in.
If you need help getting pointed in the direction of your own creative self-expression, or if you want help finding your own deep centre of self-awareness to remember the first principle, the fact you are the centre of your own life whether you are comfortable saying it or not, stay in touch, and let me know how I can help.
Until then, I hope for you that in this time of upheaval you can stay in love with this amazing gift that is your life. Breathe deep, breathe gratitude, breathe love.