Love Note #22: Know Thyself
Posted on April 20 2016
To be or not to be... That is the question. As Shakespeare once wrote, and as I've often asked myself.
But how does one know... When to be or not to be?
When do we embrace life's otherwise good intentions, and when do we just let go?
When do we accept our fate as divine intervention, and when do we insist on being co-creators?
When do we go with the flow- finding peace in surrender, and when do we flail upstream in full survival mode- searching, seeking, convincing ourselves that there must be more?
Granted, change is the only true constant in life, but still we tend to hold on forrrreeeever (or at least much longer than deemed necessary) to the status quo of our day to day lives gone awry; as if the unknown could be any less fulfilling than say- a job that pays the bills, but kills the spirit. Or the revolving door of an unhealthy relationship, with more issues than Vogue?! Or the roller-coaster ride of a toxic friendship fueled by drama. Sure, walking away from a relationship may be scary and choosing the career path less traveled may be risky; but if the saying is true, that "everything you want is on the other side of fear," shouldn't our ultimate goal be-to...live fearlessly!
Who cares if being newly single kicks off with a shot to the heart; followed by a downward spiral of sad love songs, lonely nights, and shameless pity parties. Anyone with a pulse, has "been-there-done-that." By the way, remember that one person you thought you couldn't live without... Well-well, look at you now, living and sh*t!;)
In my experience, the best breakups -platonic or otherwise- alongside its temporary self loathing road to redemption period, inevitably takes a "rise from the ashes" turn. So be gentle with yourself, you're doing the best you can. Soon, you'll be taking that corner to badass-ery avenue with courage at the wheel, and the very sexy vulnerability riding shot gun. Before you know it- self love's on board armed with a GPS to self discovery.
'Cause truth be told, living fearlessly isn't about not being afraid... It's about choosing to be brave. And sometimes all you can do when you're scared; whether it's starting your own business, moving to a new city, or closing the door on a relationship that no longer serves your highest self; is to create enough space between your fears and what you want out of life, for courage to step in. It doesn't happen over night, but I promise you- it does happen!
I tend to think of courage as a muscle. Likewise, it takes time and repetition to build its strength. The more it's exercised, the stronger it becomes. Brene Brown notes in her book Rising Strong, "you can't get to courage without walking through vulnerability" and Bob Marley says, "being vulnerable is the only way to allow your heart to feel true pleasures." I wholeheartedly agree, on both accounts.
If there's one thing I know as if a memory lifted from my soul, it's this...
To know thyself is life's best kept secret And its greatest gift.