One night near Thanksgiving a few years ago, as I got ready to go to sleep, a vivid memory of a moment I will never forget downloaded effortlessly.
I captured it on a napkin next to my bed.
Because so many of you have come into my world this year (something I am deeply grateful for) and because I have received such appreciative feedback in the past, I am sharing this story with new reflections.
A Gratitude Teaching
I lived in a yoga and meditation community (an ashram) for 12 years, in my 20’s and 30’s.
Teachings about life and spirituality were often delivered in a “Fire Course”. We would sit around multiple blazing fire pits staring into the flames, while our teacher imparted the most meaningful life lessons.
One magical summer night, she asked “What is the highest emotion one can embody?”
Someone said “love”, she said “no”, another said “joy”, “no”!
There were several other attempts at the correct answer, I can’t remember them all.
I summoned up my courage and speaking into a microphone, before hundreds of people, I said “gratitude” and she said “YES!”
The Learning Yet to Come
I knew the “right answer”, but had limited understanding of the many dimensions to living in a state of gratitude.
We speak so often of generosity in the form of giving.
Thirty years later, I understand that living in gratitude has a lot to do with the capacity to generously receive as well.
The degree to which we are able to receive is a barometer, providing valuable feedback regarding our sense of worthiness and our beliefs about what we deserve and what is possible for us to create, experience and achieve.
In giving we have a fair amount of control. The state of receptivity requires a deeper level of vulnerability than giving.
Receiving asks us to pause our doing, to allow someone in, to allow something to fill us. To receive, there must be room inside.
This means not having all the answers about our own life or the lives of others, not knowing what’s next, not seeking fulfillment (completion) at every turn.
It means trusting, at times, into a state of emptiness…
The entire globe is navigating a season of profound change, complete with great chaos, disturbance, confusion and a hefty dose of darkness.
It so happens that all of these conditions are also fertile ground for creativity and are essential for authentic transformation.
This was my year to empty myself of a lifetime of shoulds and protectors, to sit in the center of extreme uncertainty and to receive the guidance that has been waiting in the wings forever, regarding how to build my business (and life) around the truth of who I am.
And I couldn’t be more grateful!
As the light in nature wains and we enter the season of darkness, remember that all growth, all birth, all creativity begins in the dark, before expressing into the light.
My wish for you is that you discover the sacred intersection where your darkness gives birth to your light so you can build a business aligned with the truth of who you are.
A Gratitude Discovery Tip
If you’re struggling to find gratitude during these uncertain times, try pausing. Place your hands on your heart and feel the warmth and comfort of your own touch upon your body.
Remember that both joy and pain are a part of life. You are part of a much bigger, grander picture that involves all of life. AND you are here, a very important presence in the land of the living… here to experience the full spectrum of what it means to be human and bless others with your gifts.
Sending a bigger thank you than words could ever express to my precious clients, the many new, receptive women who have joined my community and to everyone in my network and their loved ones.
To your experience of unbridled gratitude and success on your own terms!
All my love, Michelle
A Beautiful Poem That Says It All
Mother Wisdom Speaks
Some of you I will hollow out.
I will make you a cave.
I will carve you so deep the stars will shine in your darkness.
You will be a bowl.
You will be the cup in the rock collecting rain…
I will do this because the world needs the hollowness of you.
I will do this for the space that you will be.
I will do this because you must be large.
People will find their way through you.
People will eat from you and their hunger will not weaken them to death.
A cup to catch the sacred rain….
Light will flow in your hollowing.
You will be filled with light.
Your bones will shine.
The round open center of you will be radiant.
I will call you Brilliant One.
I will call you Daughter Who is Wide.
I will call you transformed.
~Christin Lore Weber