Sunday, September 12, 2010
I was sitting in contemplation when an inner voice said to me, "Do you realize that we often criticize ourselves when we make the smallest mistakes, and we don't celebrate ourselves or feel proud of ourselves until we accomplish something 'grand,' whatever that thing is? And, when we finally reach that big-goal, often after much stress and effort, before we even have time to savor our success and celebrate ourselves, we immediately give ourselves the next thing to do. We are bad if make a small mistake and only good if we make a good, huge, achievement. Don't you think that is out of balance when we do so to ourselves?"
Hm, a good point, I thought.
Looking at my own life, I can see places and times where I did just that, I got upset with myself for a small mistake and I didn't even realize when I did something significantly important for myself, my family or the world around me.
Have you done that? Do you do so often?
Well, how about joining me in a daily practice of being aware of and validating our successes, our accomplishments, all the things we do well, no matter how small? We can start small, just doing it for a week or so. If it feels right and good for you to continue this practice after a week, feel free to do so.
Here's the plan.
We do so many things right every day. If you think about it, our body knows how to do so many miracles of life for us: breathing, processing food, standing straight up, walking, seeing, eliminating toxins, and so much more. Do you know that just to stand upright, the body orchestrated an amazing amount of coordination among muscles, bones, and nerves?
Most of us know how to brush our teeth. It is something we do quite effortlessly. Think of the many various little tasks that go with that small act of caring for ourselves: we are able to squeeze the toothpaste tube and put the paste on our toothbrush just so, we can maneuver our nimble fingers to grab the brush and move it around our mouth in just the right amount of pressure so that we don't hurt ourselves, and some of us probably go through great length choosing a specific toothpaste to use. Imagine all the effort just to clean our teeth. How about all the other ways we take care of ourselves? Thank yourself for driving safely to work, for crossing the street safely, for nourishing yourself. (Never mind if it's junk food now, you'll get out of that habit as you find balance within yourself.) How about all the various ways we contribute to our family, our community and our world?
When I invite you to celebrate your successes and brilliance, in whatever size they come in, I don't mean for you to go around being righteous and telling people off when they criticize you or find fault with you. No. I mean for you to look at yourself with a fresh eye, be aware of all the wonderful things you are already doing so well on daily basis, and validate your amazingness reverently.
If, say, after a week of doing so, you begin to feel the sweetness of appreciation naturally welling up from within you and radiating out towards others, spend a moment to hug yourself and whisper to yourself, "Thank you for paving the way and bringing me closer to Love's Presence."
And, you and the Universe can wink at each other and celebrate your finding the sweet balance within yourself. Congratulations!