BEAUTY in a NEW YEAR!
There is such beauty in our world, in our lives, and right inside all people around YOU!. It is in YOU radiating out to all of those you come into contact with every day. We are the power of ONE. The power to make a difference in the life of another translates into a beautiful ripple effect that can reverberate all around the world. Then with people working together we are able to move into the power of 2, or 4, 6 8 …
The POWER of ONE…it’s hard to fathom at times.. 2019 will be awesome!
It’s January again. We hear all those words of advice that remind us we have work to do if we want to be happy or healthy. You hear the words… those pesky New Years Resolutions everyone talks about. It somehow leaves us thinking we are lacking in so many ways compared with others. And yet, we are already whole and beautiful JUST the way we are! Oh, yes, we might need changes in our lives, but, let’s take a look at the reality of our human and spirit self.
It’s important for us to learn how to be kind to our imperfect human self. The beauty given by God in grace lies within us in incredible ways. So as I go inside every day, I can remind myself; I am joy, peace, strength, courage, gratitude, humility, compassion and love! That’s the REAL ME. Spirit is all loving. The experience makes me smile and I am able to move into my day in joy and laughter. But, then there is my imperfect self working hard to respond to life in ways that reflect the real me – the inner me. It’s that negative “self talk” or the constant chatter of trying times in our country right now that can “catch us” so very often. Sometimes our kindest thoughts or words don’t always just spill out of us!
“Constant kindness can accomplish much. As the sun makes ice melt, kindness causes misunderstandings, mistrust, and hostility to evaporate.” ~ Albert Schweitzer
I love that thought…kindness “melting” misunderstandings. I can think a thought or say a word of kindness in moments when it’s tough; Kindness for ourselves and kindness for others. It’s difficult sometimes, but so worth the effort! As we all try to be present in every moment, it’s not as hard if we plant a seed of intention to “catch” ourselves when we react badly or start letting sadness move in. I’ll share my story of how this began for me.
Do you set intentions for your day when you awake? When I first wake up, I’m not real excited to just hop out of bed because in fact it’s very comfy under those covers. So, many days I lie there and go through my thoughts of gratitude and set intentions for the day. The real me started out with amazing gratitude, I have so many blessings. It helped me feel warm inside and anxious to move into my meditation space. I would then ponder on my intentions for the day. I always started out well. My spiritual workout is a must…read, reflect, yoga & stretch, deep breathing, few energy medicine techniques and meditation. After making myself a cup of coffee I prepare my meditation space in beautiful candlelight. Then…my mind would wander. Oh yes, what are my intensions? I would start a list of what I needed to do that day or what what was important to “worry” about that day. OK, time to enjoy my quiet time. The REAL me would return during meditation, only to find my “imperfect self” scrambling to complete tasks.
One day I decided to set one intention; Kindness for myself and others. STOP and reflect when needed!
The intention for words and thoughts of kindness sounded pretty simple. It took my mind away from my endless lists. It was an amazing day that led to many more meaningful days. Just setting the intention changed my day. My thoughts reminded me of kindness at the most surprising moments during my day. I made myself stop briefly to find the right word or thought. Oh, I still made a list of what I needed to do that day, but it felt better when I wrote at the bottom ~Intention: “Kindness to self and others.”
Throughout the day, as a tightening in my gut or a negative thought or word came out, I let myself simply stop, and for 30 seconds, close my eyes and reflect inside and say…was that kindness? Kindness to others was pleasant and not too much of a problem. I could find a very quick kind comment or thought that totally reversed a moment. I changed words I wrote in emails, and didn’t hit send until I reflected. I was more thoughtful in my actions. I made more positive & funny comments with my husband, finding I didn’t feel a need to be right or have the need to agree on everything. Even those sticky grocery store encounters were more pleasant and I found I could smile in compassion instead of look on with criticism! I found myself sending messages of love to people as I’d catch a negative situation around me or on TV.
If you decide to try this, you might be surprised (like I was) that more often during each day I “caught” myself not being kind to ME! Not others, me. That was an eye-opener!! So, as these moments came up, I worked even harder on kindness for myself! I said yes to my spiritual growth, better eating habits, quality exercise, and self-renewing wonderful sleep. I didn’t need to set these as a “NEW YEAR’S resolution. They flowed into my life naturally.
I realized at the end of many days, my list got completed joyfully and easily. I had time for myself at the end of the afternoon to slip into the dynamic realm of others people’s (dysfunctional ) lives in a book! I was KIND to myself! And when my lists were not completed…I extended the kindness to myself once again. TIME is an illusion. LOVE is real. There is always another day, hour, or even moment to complete tasks. But, will each moment of kindness to myself help me send the ripple of love to others? ABSOLUTELY.
Yes, it is an important and healthy reminder for us to be kind to our imperfect self. Kindness…it’s been lovely. Tomorrow can be compassion…and then gratitude! The next day can be strength, joy, courage, humility, love…but may I suggest setting ONE intention a day! We are always a work in progress. Renewal of self gives us strength to give to others.
I will end with one of the most beautiful posts I saw on Facebook concerning the NEW YEAR! The words come from a gracious and loving friend, Lois Mulder, who is the artist that gave of her time and talent in our book, The Light GAP: God’s Amazing Presence. We’ve heard stories of “paying it forward” in relation to monetary give aways. This giveaway is priceless.
“My hope for 2019 is that WE and our children and grandchildren will pay KINDNESS forward to those we interact with every day!” ~ Lois Mulder
Lois is a talented photographer. She followed these words with about 20 beautiful black and white photos that she has taken of children from all over the world of every size, nationality, race and religion. Pay KINDNESS forward!