The Weekly ONE Thing - An Open Invitation
"Everything happens for a reason." I am not sure who to credit for this quote, but it is a sentiment we often use to keep us optimistic. Today I was experiencing technical difficulties, so I couldn't login to my website in order to post my blog. Then I had a series of appointments, so I knew I wouldn't be able to post my blog until later in the day (and then only if the technology gods were on my side). As it turns out, the delay in my post was fortuitous because I was inspired by a conversation with an old friend today and will include the ideas it sparked for me later in the post. So it feels like the delay was meant to be.
But first, to recap from last week, I posed the question, "What is ONE thing you could let go of this week?" I chose the somewhat ambiguous challenge to 'let go of fear.' I wasn't exactly sure how that would work, but I started by noticing when something made me fearful. Just having that awareness was helpful. I decided that every time I noticed fear cropping up, I would just allow it to be there for awhile and examine it. Then I would decide what value it had and if possible, move through it and take the best action possible in each situation.
One of my notable encounters with fear was the decision whether to let my son go to his badminton tournament in a town about 45 minutes from home, driven by his friend who just got his driver's license 2 months ago. I asked my son's friend how he felt about driving that distance on his own. He said he was comfortable with it and had been driving a lot over the past 2 years when he had is learner's license. My son felt confident in his friend's driving ability. I was feeling okay about the idea and then my husband questioned it and said he wasn't sure it was a good idea. I wanted to give the boys their freedom, but any errors in this experiment could have had catastrophic results. I did my due diligence and talked to my son's friends' mother and she felt confident in her son doing this drive. I decided to let them go. And then there was the "fear." Whenever I noticed it, I recognized that I had already made the decision and the fear wasn't serving any useful purpose. I decided to trust that they would be okay. Even if something had gone wrong, once I made the decision to let them go, the fear wasn't helping me. In the end, it was all fine. In fact it was very uneventful (which is good). If I had been in a panic about it the whole time, it wouldn't have done me any good.
Another scenario where I noticed fear popping up was in preparing for a party that I was hosting at my home last weekend. That doesn't sound like a reason to have any fear, but over 90 people RSVP'd they were coming. Our home is a decent size, but we have never had had that many people in our house before. I wasn't sure how it would all work. But I decided to use "trust" as my mantra whenever I started to feel nervous. I had to use that mantra many times and it did help. I also tried to focus on my excitement for the party instead of anticipating problems. I prepared things as best I could and then decided to enjoy the ride. In the end, it was a blast. I am glad I didn't rob myself of the joy of the experience by worrying excessively. Even if things hadn't turned out great, worrying about it wouldn't have changed anything. As Erma Bombeck eloquently stated, “(w)orry is like a rocking chair: it gives you something to do but never gets you anywhere.”
Now for this week's question. I thought since last week's question was about letting go of something, this week's question is the opposite. "What is ONE thing you would like to invite into your life this week?" And here is where my timely conversation with my friend came in handy. She told me that she has decided to focus on inviting more 'play' into her life. As part of that focus, she has found so many interesting things to do, such as taking a singing class, going to a figure drawing event, learning to belly dance, and attending ecstatic dance events. And that is just the tip of the iceberg. I was so inspired by all the things she is doing. There are so many options of what you could invite into your life. It could be something that would add more fun to your life or it could be the opposite and add more structure or more results. What would add value to your life?
For myself, I am going to invite an old practice I used to have back into my life. I used to get up a little earlier in the morning so I could start my day doing a short yoga practice and meditation. I did this for a few years and then something disrupted my routine and I got out of that habit. I found it was such a grounding way to start the day. I keep thinking about wanting to do it again, but there always seems to be a reason (excuse) for putting it off. Now that I have put it in my blog, I have real accountability to make it happen. I will let you know how it goes next week.
And I would love to hear from you what you have invited into your life this week. Feel free to comment below or in our Weekly ONE Thing Facebook Group.