Friday, January 01, 2021

New Year. Be Happy.


This morning, when I got out of bed and looked out the window, I saw a bright star. Then I saw others, but that first star, that first sighting was enough to jolt me.

Jolt me awake.

Jolt me aware.

Jolt me into remembering.

At the end of 2018, I saw these stars sprayed on this sign post and wrote:

“Life is about moving forward. Whatever is happening, regardless of how hard you cried the night before or how uncertain the coming days seem, it's always about moving forward.

Follow your star – YOUR star, not someone else's. Don't let anyone tell you what you can or cannot do. Be true to yourself.

Life is about moving forward, no matter how many stop signs you think you see. Follow your star. It's shining at you for a reason.”

And I needed to remember that. Just as I needed to remember what my yoga instructor in Vancouver said on the eve of the new year in 2002 (a few months before I would begin my journey back east):

"Make this the year you go towards what makes you happy."

I needed to remember that every year, every day, is an opportunity to let go of what is dragging you down, holding you back, keeping your from being happy.

Like love is an overarching word for compassion, mercy, peace, hospitality, etc., “happy” really means contentment, satisfaction and joy. I needed to remember that I am already happy with my life, even if work seems incapable of moving forward.

This morning, when I was sitting on my yoga mat, I wrote this:

“My biggest struggle now is with optimism and hope. I know I have much to be grateful for, but in one area of my life – work – I am scared. So much is falling apart, or not coming together, that I have no idea what I will end up doing. The fear of NOTHING consumes me.”

So that star in the sky and those stars on the signpost reminded me that I only need to be curious.

Curiousity is a neutral state, vaguely positive, but definitely looking ahead and moving forward. It isn’t about being passive and waiting for something to happen, but curiousity is fuel for the work.

I may not feel optimistic or hopeful, but I am curious.

Curious about what will happen this year. Curious about what I will accomplish this year. Curious about what I will end up doing.

So that is Plan B for 2021: Be curious.

As Albert Einstein said, “I’m neither clever nor especially gifted, but I am very, very curious.”

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