Out of the Mud Grows the Lotus

2018 has thrown some serious curve balls so far, and as we enter into a new month, I am taking a moment to reflect. In a short period of time, I have experienced two significant losses, was bed-ridden with the flu, and closed a company I’ve worked at for over three years. I have felt stressed, scared, heartbroken, sad, overwhelmed, and disconnected. Complete transparency; I want to hide from the world, and I often have, knowing there’s great value in going inward in times of need. As difficult as these experiences have been, I feel more confident and inspired than I have in years. Instead of giving up and acquiescing to these current circumstances, I am doing the work necessary to learn, heal and thrive. With introspection comes clarity.

Here’s what I believe to be true. When life presents challenges, it’s an opportunity for personal growth. It happens without fail. While in the thick of these transitional periods, I’ve been uncomfortable and negative; convinced that I will always feel this way, while my inner critic is screaming, “get it together.” In these instances, it’s important for me to stay connected to my support system and utilize my tools. The simple act of saying, “I’m struggling today, and need…” is empowering. It’s okay to be hurting or upset or angry. It’s okay to want to hide under the covers, to cry, to feel let down. It’s okay. For when I allow myself to feel my feelings; I mean really lean into them, as opposed to fighting the urge to push them under the rug, I am allowing my pain to work itself out. Instead of hiding, I’m taking time to fall apart, look within and heal. Time is the best intervention.

As much as I wish to retreat for the next year, I know that’s not a viable option. Instead, I choose to take action, implementing practices that help my process along the way (yoga, meditation, writing, dance parties, walks with Jax, - some of the best medicine). Despite myself and my pain, all of these significant changes have allowed for some incredible things to come into my life. As a result, I am motivated about my business, have gained more confidence with my clients, started kickboxing, made new friends, identified areas of my life that need an emotional clean out, and have learned to be more intentional with my words and actions. Life is messy, and it’s beautiful and we can’t control the outcome. For me, accepting life on life’s terms, and embracing where I am at, in this moment, is proving to be the ultimate test of strength. Yet it reminds me that I am capable beyond measure.

I have taken time to get clear about my intentions for living my best life. Sometimes it’s hard to accept what is happening, and often I fight it, which only makes these transitional moments more difficult. When I stop fighting, and stop asking “why,” I give myself permission to show up as I am (baggage and all). It is here that I can examine my part, and practice being softer, kinder and more loving toward both myself and others.

I don’t believe that anyone goes through life unaffected by some type of challenge. Our successes, failures, highs and lows guide us, and we learn from our emotional experiences. There’s the option to embrace what is happening and witness a true shift in perspective, or we can hide and remain oblivious to the opportunity for change. I choose the former, despite moments of pressure that being aware is too much of a responsibility. However, being open and honest and vulnerable is a gift. Today, I stand in the power of my experiences, as I continue down this path that has been gifted to me. What lies ahead is unknown, and I wouldn’t have it any other way.