happy photo of me by my soul sister jess
I am LOVING all of the questions you have asked. This is such a great teacher for me to dig deep for answers within. Answers for things I perhaps haven't truly solidified in my heart or thought consciously about in a long while. Some are deeply personal and some just plain fun. I am humbled to the core by your kind words and feel the need to say that I never walk on this earth feeling I have the answers to life's mysteries. My answers come from my own personal journeys. Oh how my heart, mind and soul are ever waxing and waning as my life unfolds and experiences guide me to evolve.
Today was a craaazy day, so I only have time to answer one question. I plan to answer more than one in future posts.
Lillian Chang asked: What is the best piece of advice anyone has ever given you? You always seem to have so much knowledge and wisdom and understanding, and I was hoping you could share the best bits of that with us :)
Such an awesome question, Lillian! What comes to mind is when I was in my early twenties,snuggling up with my friend Suzi, she shared with me something her father had told her when she was upset about how someone had treated her. He said "always take responsibility for your own happiness."
I remember feeling like a wide space opened up in my heart when first hearing this. It really shifted things for me. I, like so many people, had spent moments in my life being a victim when I was hurt or feeling alone or misunderstood. This idea of taking responsibility for my own happiness felt so empowering. This realization was both beautiful and hard. You mean I was fully responsible for my choices and actions and I couldn't really blame anyone in my life today or in my past? Wow...that takes work. A lot of work but oh how much richer my life has been and how much more peaceful my relationships are when I remember this.
Isn't that concept so deep and wide and helpful? It has served as such a guide for me. During the darkest times in my life when I wanted so badly to blame someone or something else, when it came down to it, I knew it was up to me to pull myself out of the muck. It was me that needed to remove myself from people or environments that felt toxic and no longer served how I wanted to be in this world. It was me that found the courage down deep to own my own stuff that surfaced when I felt triggered (i.e. I felt this way when this happened rather than You made me feel this way).
I think in a sense, it empowered me to make healthier choices and therefore, step deeper into pure joy and happiness. Its a process, always...an ever present teacher for me.