"I celebrate myself, and sing myself,
And what I assume you shall assume,
For every atom belonging to me as good belongs to you."

Thursday, January 1, 2015

Your Life Story. No one else's.

Its a little cliche to write a post as the new year comes, but better now than never, and of course we all tend to feel reflective and thoughtful come the new year.

For me, as 2015 comes, I feel very happy and content, very lucky and blessed, yet that little bit of stress, worry and impatient anxiety tend to creep in too.  For most, there is always something we could worry about, or be discontented with, but i whole heatedly believe that it is our job, and ours alone, to end that cycle. If you focus on the negative, your life will feel negative. If you focus on what you don't have, you will always be dissatisfied. People who look on the bright side, and more importantly understand that gratitude is a constant daily necessity, are undoubtedly the happier people. These are things I know and understand, but as we can all relate to, are sometimes easier said than done.
As 2015 rolls in, I find myself thinking of life "stories", life paths, and the oh so unpredictable thing that is life's timing. There are a few things that really come into focus with these issues for me. For one, my generation seems to have been raised, in a wonderful way, being told that whatever it is you seek, as long as you work hard at it, and I don't mean kind of hard, I mean incredible dedication, you eventually will earn whatever it is your heart desires. You may not earn it exactly how you thought you would, but none the less, hard work pays off.

The other thing blaring so strongly in my mind is the issue of social media, when it comes to your life, and your life story. I am so very torn when it comes to most social media, as I love to share things, connect with friends and experiment with photography and share that. Yet lately, I see the very negative impact these social media encounters can have on me. It feels nearly impossible sometimes to focus on my own "life story" and be content to simply focus on that, on what I am blessed with, and how I can improve my own life for my own happiness and peace. Instead, in blaring neon letters, I start to see, sometimes over and over again, what I don't have. Or how I envy the timing in someone else's life, envy their "story" as it seems to all be unfolding so effortlessly. We all know, however, that things aren't always as peachy as they seem, the grass ins't greener. Yet its still so hard to digest sometimes when it seems its slapping you in the face.

I came across this quote today and it really resonated with me.

"Next time when you think of beautiful things, don't forget to count yourself in."

This is so lovely, so heartbreaking and so true. I realize so much as i read this how very hard I've been on myself lately. Looking at others, and thinking how beautiful their things or stories are, how lucky they are, and how I fall short. And in doing so, I've been silently punishing myself. And for what? For things that are completely out of my control, none the less. How ridiculous is that? This brings me back to my first thought, that whatever you seek, as long as you work hard, you can achieve it. Lately I find myself overwhelmingly frustrated with this notion. As we all know, many of the things you desire most greatly in life cannot be attained this way. In fact, they are mostly, completely out of our control. And that is a terrifying thought at times. I go back and forth from being incredibly frustrated realizing this, and on my way to accepting this and letting go. Sometimes it feels like a roller coaster. But I know, deep down, that I just have to let it go. What choice do I have? I know that I want to choose peace, and happiness, but sometimes the fear of the unknown, the uncontrollable is so overwhelming.

I know not to compare myself to others. I know that my "life story" is only my own and the timing of my life will be different from anyone else's and that's OK. And so, as I have done many times in the last months, I will remind myself to breathe, and let things unfold as they will. To choose peace and focus on the many many wonderful things I do have and the happy life I am blessed to live.
And today, I will start reminding myself of my own beauty as well. That as long as I am kind, loving and good to the world and those around me, making my best effort to do good, I can do no more. That this makes me beautiful, and successful, and that I am not, as my sometimes heavy heart makes me believe, a failure.  When I'm looking outward for things I seek, for my heart to be filled, to remember to look within me, because I am, I know, unmistakably beautiful.