“One thing I know – the world’s been good to me. A better place awaits – you’ll see.”
–Glen Campbell (A Better Place)
Each one of us can talk about our pain, our struggles, our upsets in life, our disappointments, our moments of despair – because we’ve all been through some sort of trauma or hardship. We might think ours was more difficult than someone else’s or vice versa, but hard is just hard – no better or no worse. Sometimes life just looks like a big pile of crap, and when you are in it, it sucks. It sucks regardless of whether you know for a fact that it’s temporary and won’t last. It sucks because sometimes you can’t “fix it” – all you can do is sit with the anguish and wait for it to dissipate. There is often no way of knowing when it will show up in your life and no way of knowing when it will be over, but things which happened in our past CAN be healed. As ‘they’ say: “Time heals everything.” Give time time.
When time has worked its magic, you can look back on life with greater clarity. (I’m sure many of us have thought “If I only knew then what I know now” at some point in our life.) Often this happens when people are on their death beds – or at least later in life. It is possible for this to happen sooner, but we seem to spend so much time holding onto grudges, basing our current behaviour on past experiences, and just being stuck in a fear, scarcity, lack mentality. We keep busy so that we don’t have to feel what we feel or see what we don’t want to see. We pretend that everything is fine or that we’ve moved on because we’re tired of talking about it, we don’t want to burden others with our troubles, and we don’t want people to pity us. We close off. We numb out. We, in essence, live a false life.
“It’s better to be an authentic loser than a false success, and to die alive than live dead.” ~William Markiewicz~
That façade doesn’t work so well for me anymore. I’ve found that being honest and real even when the moments are crappy (and maybe even especially when they are) to be so much more rewarding and relaxing. Being with whatever is happening in the moment and flowing with it is exactly what helps it get processed quicker, and by being authentic, I can ask for support and feel understood. The other day I was talking with a client about the changes she has made in her life to shift from a state of chaos, drama and negativity to figuring out what makes her happy and then allowing herself to live that way. She said “I used to pretend I was happy, but really I was miserable. Now that I am actually happy, I can’t believe how good it feels!” I have a hunch that she wouldn’t trade that feeling or compromise it in any way -nor should she. She has found her way to a better place.
I think a lot of us believe that a better place will only come after we die (what you might refer to as heaven), but a better place is available for us here right now. Sometimes we find a better place when we examine our thoughts and choose gratitude and optimism over envy and gloom. Sometimes we find a better place out in the solitude of nature – surrounded by trees, misted by the ocean, or blown away by the shear beauty of a sunrise or sunset. Sometimes we find a better place in the joyful time we spend with our friends and family (that includes our furry friends/family). Sometimes we find a better place in unexpected opportunities or thoughtful surprises. A better place is the result of being who we are, enjoying what we make of our lives, and sharing our gifts to help others. A better place is infinite; it exists through love.
“Make the world a better place one person at a time. Start with yourself.” ~Linda Poindexter~