A couple of days ago I found myself wandering around the beach across from Neptune’s Net in Malibu. As I stood against the railing I observed a young couple doing a selfie shoot with the picturesque ocean as their backdrop. They appeared to be in their 20’s. In the sand they had written Coming January 2017; next to that they had gently arranged a onesie with indeterminate writing on the front. With a selfie stick in hand they playfully posed.
At times the presumed father-to-be would place his hand lovingly on the young woman’s abdomen. Their playful and carefree smiles revealed untold joy. I watched them for awhile as they engaged in the give and take of the frothy waves reaching the shore. A magical enchantment embraced me.
I thought for just a moment that I wished I could go back to the carefree places of my twenties, but as soon as that thought crossed my mind, another took hold. I can be carefree in any moment I choose. Any of us can be really. What keeps me from being or feeling carefree? Assuredly it’s the mental prison of thoughts. The mind is a crazy neighborhood. Some say it’s a place to never venture alone.
I differ on that last part though. I do wish to venture into my head alone, taking a pickax with me to chase away the cobwebs that cloud my thinking. Those cobwebs aren’t real, but I think they are. I allow them to exist. I create them. Whoa! Wait? Did I just say that. Yes, I did.
I create my cobwebs. No one else. And when I sweep them away I feel so free, in ways this writing can’t describe. There’s a reason why Eckhart Tolle’s The Power of Now is an international best seller. People crave the idea of living free, of living now, of living in the moment.
We live in rough worlds, internally and externally, and it’s so easy to allow the negative dramas, personal and otherwise, to overtake us. Anyone who has ever cleared away spider created cobwebs knows that they come back.
That’s where people can get stuck. The cobwebs come back and they feel defeat. Sometimes I feel that way. More than I care to admit I feel that way. Being on the beach a few days ago, and watching that young couple, I also came to understand a profound truth: wallowing in an imagined misery of what isn’t doesn’t help me live the life I deserve.
The mind is a tricky place because it will try to convince you otherwise. It wants you to live in defeat. But the heart does not. The heart wants to soar free. The question then is how do we allow the heart to influence the mind?
The answer is easy: as Joseph Campbell says “follow your bliss.” What does that mean though? Simple. Do one thing each day that brings you joy, that makes you smile. The old adage is true. Rome wasn’t built in a day.
I work at this by the way. Every day. Sometimes I succeed. Sometimes I don’t, but I keep at it. If you’ve been with me awhile you know I’ve been decluttering, and I’ve discovered something: I LOVE the new found freedom I feel. I’ve also discovered that I still have A LOT of stuff, and that’s okay.
I have decided recently to spend a few minutes each day devoted to continuing to declutter or rearrange my belongings. In this way I know what I own and what I own doesn’t own me. Plus it makes me HAPPY. Being happy means I’m living in the NOW.
Clearing the cobwebs away and keeping them away means working at doing what makes you happy. Find ways every day to make yourself happy and the path to your bliss will reveal itself.
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