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personal development personal engagement personal engagement

Your Life Is Now

Albert Camus once wrote, “Love is injustice, but justice doesn’t suffice.” The truth is that nothing will suffice, as long as we’re looking for things outside ourselves to fill us. Find what in you engages you, and you will be discover what outside engages you. Surprisingly, you may find that you are already engaged in the things that matter most right now.

Heartspace is within you and around you at all times. Surrounding us with nodes of connectivity and blanketing us with purpose, meaning, depth, and belonging, Heartspace isn’t concerned about our emotions, thoughts, ideas, or experiences. Sure, it fosters those things as we develop lasting engagements with them. But Heartspace operates in spite of how we feel, what we think, what we do, or even where we are. This doesn’t mean that you should cut off your nose to spite your face. Isolation, regret, hate, despise, anger, and depression are not pathways to personal happiness. If you want to be happy, do not be those things.

Life is not a mirror, a blank slate, a whiteboard, or a piece of wood. It is life. We are not predestined, we do not have to project, insert, assert, or suffer. Nobody has to be oppressed. Nobody has to become a king or queen. Our happiness, sorrow, courage, fear, love, loneliness, belonging, forgetfulness, and solitude are not guaranteed. Opportunity, beauty, dream, challenge, duty, a game, a promise, song, struggle, tragedy, adventure, luck, precious, a fight, freedom… Life is none of these things, inherently. Life is simply living, and that is all. If we complicate, muddle, or confuse life as anything other than living, that is a choice we’re making. It can be a conscious or unconscious choice, but it is a choice all the same.

If you’re experiencing any of those things, they may feel very real and present. That’s not wrong or bad either! If you’re going to live in those moments, live in them fully. Jesse Owens once said, “The battles that count aren’t the ones for gold medals. The struggles within yourself—the invisible, inevitable battles inside all of us—that’s where it’s at.” Owens was saying not to look outside yourself; look within. That’s where Heartspace is, deep within you right now.

Purposefully fostering lasting connections throughout our lives allows us to live with intent. If we engage with that part of ourselves that is rooted in heritage, family, learning, and growth, we will live with integrity. Finding the love, enthusiasm, passion, and purpose in our daily work allows us to live with meaning. These are the hallmarks of people who live in Heartspace. They embrace the courageous relationships they’ve established throughout their lives, relationships with other people and with themselves, and they live boldly through their days and ways. They express Heartspace naturally, gracefully demonstrating the lasting connections they have to the worlds within and around them.

You have begun embracing your Heartspace, simply by finding these words and reading them with your full attention. Within you right now there is a connectivity that has been waiting for you to consciously find synergy and alignment with the world around you. You’ve done it! Now you know that while justice, peace, joy, and love are all good, there is a reason why you have not found lasting connections with them in the world around you. Now you know you must find them within you.

Go and rest your yoga mat, shelf your books, damper your candles, or turn down the meditation music. Set down your journal, rest your paint brush, or stop curling your weights. Set your mocha down, stop sipping your cinnamon tea, don’t get another pear cider, or don’t refill your wine glass. Don’t worry about the lighting. Let this song play out.

Simply set down the stress that is sitting has been making your sick. Turn your back on the hate and fear you’ve been feeling. Disregard the excitement and easy high of the win you had at work. Release that hot date you went on for a moment. Take the fight between you and your sister/neighbor/cousin/coworker, and just let it drift off. Please, just let all that go right here, now. Emerson insisted we do this more than 150 years ago, writing, “Finish every day and be done with it. You have done what you could; some blunders and absurdities no doubt crept in; forget them as soon as you can. Tomorrow is a new day; you shall begin it serenely and with too high a spirit to be encumbered with your old nonsense.”

Don’t wait until tomorrow. Instead, get up from where you’re sitting and walk into your living room right now. Scoop up your kid, pet the dog’s head, or clean the cat’s litter box. Maybe snuggle up with a homework book, go do the dishes, call your ailing grandmother, or sweep the kitchen floor. Do something hard. Thich Nhat Hanh once wrote, “If I am incapable of washing dishes joyfully, if I want to finish them quickly so I can go and have a cup of tea, then I will be incapable of drinking the tea joyfully.” Be done wrestling with chores, stop suffering taking care of your pets, and don’t fret over your job. Being a parent looks great on you! Or being a partner, a caregiver, or single!

Take a moment and go into the world around you. Look for the sun, the moon, and the stars every chance you get. Notice dust, mites, and hair flitting through the air in the sunshine. Listen to the kids playing outside, the old men talking smack at the cafe in the morning, and the moms pushing strollers through the neighborhood.

Your life is now- embrace it for what it is. President John F. Kennedy once wrote, “As we express our gratitude, we must never forget that the highest appreciation is not to utter words, but to live by them.” Live in Heartspace, right now. Embrace it for what it is.

We need to find meditation in every moment, as much as we simply need to be in every moment. Filling our lives with carefully constructed moments to engage within ourselves takes away the inherent lasting connections we have throughout our lives right now. Heartspace doesn’t need you to help it across the street like a little old lady! Its doing all of its work, and yours too, right now.

You are already engaged in what matters most to you right now. If you are displeased with what you see outside you, you might change what is inside you, or simply keep living life. If you are excited and enthralled by what is going on around you, you might change what is going on inside you, or simply keep living life. If you are simply pleased and warmed by your life right now, simply keep living life. The world is richer, more fulfilling, and more wonderful than you’ve ever known it, until now. Your life is now.

CommonAction is available to train, coach, speak, and write about this topic across the US and Canada. Contact Adam to learn about the possibilities by emailing adam@commonaction.org or calling (360) 489-9680.




Written by Adam Fletcher, this article was originally posted to http://commonaction.blogspot.com. Learn more at adamfletcher.net!

By Adam F.C. Fletcher

I'm a speaker, writer, trainer, researcher and advocate who researches, writes and shares about education, youth, and history.

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