Our Scars Tell Our Story

“There is a crack in everything, that’s how the light gets in.” – Leonard Cohen

None of us are perfect, but we are all beautiful.

Have you ever messed something up so bad that you didn’t think there was ever going to be a way to fix it? Maybe you made choices in your life that you thought were right at the time, only to find that they weren’t? Or you made blatant choices that you knew deep down were not right, but you didn’t care? Have you ever been in desperation? Have you ever felt that there was no way out of the pain that you were in? Have you ever hit the bottom of your soul, only to have the bottom drop even further? If not, I am surprised that you are even human.
As much as the isolation creeps in when we feel we have messed up, or failed in some way, the most painful part is that feeling of loneliness. That feeling of complete despair, as if we are the only one that has ever been through what we are going through. That feeling of hopelessness, and unworthiness can not only freeze us in our tracks, but can propel us to make even more bad decisions if we stay in the place of shame. Shame is an incredibly debilitating emotion, that serves no one. There is a big difference between guilt and shame. Guilt is necessary to our growth, because it is our barometer of right and wrong action, our conscience, or that still, small voice. Shame is what happens when we identify with the guilt as a description of who we are. It becomes our identity, our label, and we begin to live from this place of shame. If we begin to believe we are bad, or we are evil, then naturally our actions will follow that statement, thus perpetuating the cycle of behaviour that is hurting us and others in our midst.
I’m not implying that we all are walking around with guilt or shame all the time, but I would be surprised if you haven’t experienced either of these. I think it is one facet of being human, and a good place to start sorting out how to live truly awake, truly alive. Shackled by shame keeps us dead, keeps us living the lie we keep telling ourselves to who we are. Eventually we can forget that bright-eyed child we once were, who saw life through amazement and wonder. We forget that we are beautiful, scars and all. We didn’t know that in these moments of despair, we have the greatest opportunity to grow, and to heal. When we surrender to the absolute human-ness we possess, and know that everyone makes mistakes, of varying sizes and we will all make mistakes again. We will see the same old story come around for ourselves if we don’t seize the opportunity to know ourselves through these hardships.
Not only can these errors in our lives teach us about ourselves, bring us into our hearts, but the best part about it is that when we do learn and grow from our pain, we have an amazing gift to give someone else. Compassion. We let them know that they are not alone. What we have done has been done before, and someone has suffered as greatly as you are. Others have overcome the guilt and the shame and have become a success in their lives because of it. They have inspired and transformed those lives that were without hope.

So let’s let the light in. Let’s be courageous in our searching for the truth of ourselves. Let’s love ourselves and forgive ourselves of what we have done. Let’s not forget the past, but find a way to give it away. Let’s express with our unique creative voice what our story is. We all have one, and it is uniquely ours, scars and all.

What Am I Scared Of?

IMG_0949I’ve been in a wrestling match for years, right in the middle of an MMA ring….And I can’t win the match! But I keep jumping back in, swinging fists, with no proper skills to actually win, and no insight into the fact that I could just remove myself, surrender to the fight…. Surrender is Key. It is not my fight to fight. Time to take this moment to actually get out of the ring….

What am I scared of? Success? Intimacy? Fear of fear? Fear of failure? The list in endless….It can change depending on what is going on in life, and seems dependant on my emotional “head space”. When I am sailing smoothly, I have less fear. When my life feels organised, I have less fear, when everything around me is going well, I seem to have LESS FEAR.

That is the answer, my sense of well-being is completely dependant on outside circumstances, which is why there is no way to actually overcome fear, as outside circumstances change CONSTANTLY!

So, now what?

Well… I think the answer is in the question ” NOW” and “WHAT?” Isn’t that really up to me to answer?

What action can I do NOW that is completely my choice?

 What is really happening RIGHT NOW, in this instant?

When I get into that space of really being PRESENT for exactly what is going on in this instant, I am not able to spiral out of control in fear – because at any given moment, if I am conscious, alive, breathing, and in my body, mind, heart and spirit, I do KNOW some things are true! I do know that when I think of my future goals, dreams, and anxieties, they are all projected fears, because they are the UNKNOWN. I assume I’m not alone in that.

I’ve witnessed many of us clinging to future goals and plans, 5 year plans, college for the kids, retirement, taking care of older parents, buying that jet plane or boat, those types of things that are a part of designing and manifesting our ideal lives, that is all ok as long as there is perspective on the fact that we still need to surrender control of certain things.

No matter what we plan and how carefully we do so, there will be variables. These variables are what can lead to fear and insecurity as a feeling of LOSS OF CONTROL. No one I know likes feeling out of control completely, as it is a very unsettling feeling, but it also has many variants and layers.
Jumping out of an airplane, do you have control of all variables, not really, and yet this “loss of control” is exhilarating to some, and frightening to others, because “the jump” depicts TRUE SURRENDER, TRUE FAITH, and TRULY being in that PRESENT moment, not thinking of the past or future, just breathing in the air from microsecond to microsecond….
Perhaps when we truly allow ourselves to be out of control (not trying to predict variables, and fixing everything in our power to fix) we finally surrender to the now and fear dissipates.

Letting go of control = Letting go of fear.

One foot in front of the other, doing the next action that needs to be done, and leaving the results alone. Enjoy the flight, stay present, and LET GO.