Our Journey Back

 

What we are looking for is a way of experiencing the world in which we are living, that will open to us the transcendence that informs it, and at the same time, informs ourselves within it.     Joseph Campbell, The Power of Myth

The needs of life.  

When we are infants, they are as basic as they get, right?  We need to eat and sleep, end of list.  And fortunately, it stays that way for a while.  Our worlds are small.  We have our toys and the everyday objects we make into toys (a new refrigerator equals a huge cardboard box that is now a fort in the living room!  A pan with a wooden spoon is a drum!) and we are content, rolling around on the carpet of the family room floor.

We also lived life from our heart center, even if we weren’t aware of it at the time.  We led with our emotions.  We laughed and screamed and squealed for joy when we were having fun.  When my husband, Joe, and I were newlyweds, the backyard of our first home abutted a preschool playground, so we were reminded of this daily.  One little girl’s shrieks of delight at being chased were so signature, we knew she had moved on to kindergarten when we no longer heard it the following fall.  

We cried when we were sad or scared.  We had no edit button, we held nothing in.  

But then something happened.

We began to venture out into the world.  We started to see the beauty and openness and variety of what was outside of us.

We also saw the girl down the street with a bike with streamers coming out of the handle bars.  

We met the boy who was allowed to have the larger, more dangerous fireworks, with which to blow up the neighbor’s mailbox when they wouldn’t let you swim in their pool (Another story – I’ll save that one for later).

The voice in our mind, which was quiet up to that point, began to talk, getting louder and more vocal as we got older.  It is now the voice of commentary that starts from the minute we wake up until the minute we fall asleep at night.  It is the constant broadcasting in our minds, interpreting the play-by-play of our day.  Crazily enough, by the time we are adults, we don’t even realize it’s there anymore.  It has become such a part of us, we mistakenly think it is us. And the connection we had with our heart, the center of our soul, our soul itself, has been drowned out.

We forget.

We forget who we were when we were three years old.  The simplicity of living in the moment, the lack of thought outside of what is happening right now, all in on this tree-fort-I am-building with joy and flow in my backyard.  That is pure, divine, source/sacred/God-created energy right there.

We disconnect from the spirit, the source that made all life, the soul inside that we have always been.  And at some point, a feeling of something missing in the midst of a full life, may arise.

And then we try to fill in the disconnect, the gap.

We forget that we are sacred beings, that we are all connected, made of the same stuff as God and each other.

But as soon as our egos start to develop and we desire to be seen a certain way, we disconnect and begin to fill in.

Oh my gosh, I was so good at filling in this space between the disconnect, the gap.

Because I was completely unaware of the disconnect with my soul – other than an uneasy feeling like I was supposed to be at a party when my invitation had gotten lost in the mail – I did a bang-up job of filling it in with stuff.  And by stuff, I don’t just mean material things.

Stuff can be different for everyone, but some examples that fill in the gap:

Worry, judgment, beliefs, attachment, information overload.

My gap was brimming to the top full.

And it really is so ironic that we do this, because not only does it not bring us back to the thing we think will make us content, it actually makes it further out of reach. 

See illustration below (nice artwork, right?)

IMG_7285
The stuff on the left can be anything from worry and beliefs we love to hold on to, to buying stuff you don’t really love and don’t need.

Even though Option A can have some moments of fun, I often found it was like eating fast food at 2am – felt really good going down, but a general mixture of not-what-I-needed and regret afterwards.

Option B then.  It took me a long time to find it and I am still figuring it out.  Even when I found it, I fought it. I had a lot of thoughts initially like, “Who has got time to meditate?  I can’t even sit still for 5 minutes, and besides, I have to go to work now so I can pay my bills.”  File this under “Other Lies Your Ego Will Tell You to Keep it Intact.” 

I accepted parts of it, like gratitude, which I had actually been living my whole life subconsciously.  But gradually, one by one, I could not turn away from it.  And when I attempted to, life took over and pushed me (literally) in the direction I was meant to go (more on that later as well).  The universe will lead you to where you are supposed to go if you let it.  

It is all there to bring you back home to yourself.

As we talk more about our journey back to ourselves and reconnecting to who we truly are, can you think of a time when you truly felt like you were in the moment?  With a feeling of clarity and connection?

I am grateful you are here with me.  Let’s do this journey together.

Cheers to moving forward ~

Seja

Clarity in the Quiet

I began to feel the pull in late spring and by the beginning of summer, it came to feel like a full-on tug of war.

If you have ever had an event – the feeling in your stomach of anticipation – I had this feeling many times before soccer games, before trips to locations I hadn’t been before, before big moves to college, Chicago, other places I didn’t end up going at all, due to fear.

I knew this feeling well, but this time it wouldn’t go away.  I would be busy doing work of whatever kind, with the feeling I should be doing something else.  I would continue to work harder, keep myself busy, moving.  And the rare times I was sitting, relaxing, that pull would become stronger than I could take, and I would do what became comfortable and distracting – I would pick up my phone and scroll.  Pull denied.

By the end of June, it became somewhat unbearable.  In dreams, a restlessness when I was awake – I knew I had to deal with whatever this was.

So, in early July, I turned my phone off.

I deleted my Instagram app.

I blocked Facebook on my phone.

I knew the more I took in, the less quiet I let myself have, the less of a chance that what wanted to be born would come.  So I made myself get quiet and listen.  It was one of the hardest things I have done.  Hard because I didn’t know what would come of this.  What if it was nothing?  What if it was something I couldn’t do?  Or worse, something I didn’t want to do?  Despite all of this, I gave in and let myself rest.  And some beautiful things happened in the process.

At first, the simplicity of turning off all of the incoming information, media, opinions, was reward enough – and woke me up to how much I reached for my phone without even being aware of it.  Even though I made it impossible to see what I was habitually reaching for, my hand would reach anyway, anytime there was a period of quiet.  I would set my phone back down and soak in the quiet.  I would carry my notebook with me to write down any thoughts that came to mind, even the mindless chatter of daily annoyances or a grocery list.  I let the quiet soak in.  And in the quiet times, I began to listen to my heart instead of my head to tell me to keep moving.

One evening in particular stands out.  The girls were busy with friends, Joe was working outside.  I before may have pulled out the computer, cleaned something, or busied myself with something else.  Instead, I went outside and sat on the ground.  The sun was just starting to set.  I noticed the grass beneath my legs.  The sky, darkening with clouds that could break or release rain at any moment.  The leaves blowing, turning upside down so I could see the light green and dark green at the same time.  The smell of rain, with no rain falling.  And God.  Mostly, I noticed God in all of it.  I noticed that everything around me was drops of sacred, the divine in the mundane.  Drops of God in my hands, my feet, the air, the branches creaking as they swayed.  God, Love, Spirit, was in everything, around me at all times.  And in that moment, the thing that would not let me rest, was found – connection.

It is easy in this life to be disconnected from each other, from the earth, from the resources that make our life possible and full of joy.   And it is easy to feel the separation from God, Source, Universe, the Divine Spirit that made all of it.

With so much information coming at us at all times; with so much to do, to keep us busy, to take care of, it is easy to disconnect from the spirit inside us, the soul that we are and always have been.

And that is my pull, that is the feeling that would not relent – the reconnecting.  The reconnecting to God, the reconnecting to myself, my soul, my spirit.  The reconnecting to earth.  The reconnecting to what my heart is pulling me to move towards.  And reconnecting to each other.

So, for the time being, that is what I will be writing about here – how we move in this world on a daily basis and how to stay connected to who we are, to what is important to us, the resources we use, and to the particles of beautiful divine that comprise it.

I hope you stay with me as I make my way through this and join me in what I hope will be a conversation about how to live a more connected life.

Blessings

Seja

 

Where your treasure is…

Living with intention.  Living in the present.  Your authentic life.  Living your best life.  Thanks mostly to Oprah, these phrases have become a central part of our culture.  I admit, though, that these phrases just all seemed kind of abstract to me, not sure how to really apply them in a way that could actually change my life.

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Saving Instead

Money.  I think it really all changed for me when the paycheck stopped being directly deposited.  No more magical appearance of funds into my checking account twice a month.  I say ‘magical’ – it wasn’t like I didn’t work for the money that appeared, but it was abstract.  I would go to my sales job, have my conversations, review and prepare, put in the effort, and money would be deposited every other week into my account.  It is the upside to having a salaried job.  Then the transition to running my small business full time.  That is really when everything changed. Continue reading