When I say we have all the answers, I don’t mean we are know-it-alls. I mean the answers to our questions are all inside us. They come in our dreams, our insights, in our knowing. Most of us are taught to ignore them. We may even be ridiculed for listening to what we know because we don’t have conventional proof. None of that matters unless we allow it to matter. No one is entitled to know your thoughts; they are yours.
Learning to listen to one’s self is an unlearning of the training one has received. Learning to relax and find the joy in life sounds, to some, like being unproductive and lazy. However, many studies have shown “doing nothing” has great creative potential and is from where inspiration comes. My favorite thing is to do what others consider nothing. It brings me joy, love, and a freedom from all the thoughts that run through my head on a regular basis. I’ve noticed the more I do nothing, the more relaxed, non-judgmental, and happier I feel. Which is why my quest for this year has been to bring more laughter and play into my life.
Both laughter and play are very active ways of being in the world. I’ve noticed a more laid back attitude developing within myself from choosing to play rather than be busy or working. Play can be incorporated into the things we normally consider work by choosing to find the fun within the task rather than feel we are being forced to do something. If we look at every thing we do as a choice, which it is, we can begin to find the play built into the activity. For instance, I go bike riding. The question I am most often asked is how far I’ve gone. I don’t have an answer because I don’t keep track of my mileage and I don’t ride it as quickly as possible. I tend to ride as slowly as possible, look at the scenery, and get absorbed in the sounds happening around me as I travel through Nature. Riding my bike in this manner clears my head of thoughts and brings a smile to my face. When I return, I feel refreshed, energized, and ready to play around with some other part of my life.
I’ve also quit trying to help people. If people want my help, I am there for them. The kind of help to which I’m referring is the kind where I might try to show them a different way of looking at their lives. Yes, I do that through this blog but the blog is here for people to read or not read. No one is being forced to read what I have to say. I am taking the same approach to conversations. I try to only respond when I am specifically asked for my thoughts and I talk only as long as the person is listening. If I watch someone’s face and eyes, I can tell when they are interested/uninterested in what I’m saying. I’ve also given up caring whether people follow through on their words. Actions mean so much more to me these days. I disengage more frequently from interactions where someone’s words and actions are not in alignment.
Probably the biggest change I’ve made in my life, for the past year and continuing, is to take complete responsibility for my actions and reactions. This has been a particularly difficult task for me. It is getting much easier. Any time I notice myself having a reaction or resistance to something, I know there is a part of me which I have been ignoring. I know I must bring that part of myself into the foreground and bring love and acceptance to the feeling. It resolves very quickly when I do this though I admit some take longer than others. The ones which are taking a long time are judgments which some part of me is unwilling to release. I know I have one in particular that has followed me for years and, while I can let it go logically, I have been unable to completely release it emotionally. So, judgment is the only thing I’m focusing on releasing this year. I came to the conclusion all resistance and reactions are about judgment so that seems to be the area holding me up.
So, while it may look like I’m doing nothing, I will be playing, laughing, and releasing all judgements. I think that’s a pretty big to-do list.