How often in my life have I felt like the battered hull of ship that has been run aground? How often have I languished in old grievances, letting my damaged ego keep me under water?
One issue that challenges me - I do not like being told what to do. When someone talks to me as if they have authority over me, I get my back up and some choice words start to fly. I am certain that my conditioned response in those situations has created a few shipwrecks.
Acknowledging that, what if I could time-lapse my life when there is some clean-up and releasing that needs to be done?
Just like the Costa Concordia, salvage work - whether its relationships or finances or even our health - can be costly and take painstaking efforts. Looking at how the engineers managed this project, I see two tools that can help me clean up any wreckage I have created, in a seemingly fast-forward manner.
Ease my thoughts away from the need to be right
The first phase for the salvage crew was to ease the vessel away from its rocky perch. It took a few hours but they were successful as they used specialized tools and some big equipment. The need to be right once my "authority button" has been pushed is my rocky perch.
My specialized tool - walking meditation. Knowing that I carry beliefs around being told what to do, I get out and start moving. Increased breathing through walking has been key to my awareness and the subsequent release. Then - I let one word or one phrase surface when I think of the feelings I have around being right and being in charge. Noticing the words and becoming aware of the feelings, I can now consciously re-pattern my mind to associate new thoughts with the feelings.
As part of this process, I will often ask Divine Spirit to bring me the right words or phrases that need healing as I start my walk. And, I usually reach a point where I am simply repeating "Thank You", knowing that the Universe is supporting me in this exercise of release.
Prepare for complications
This one seems counter to what we believe in New Thought. We are always told to sit in expectancy of our good and affirm the positive.
Looking at the second phase of the ship rescue, the salvage workers siphoned off most, but not all, of the fuel. That leaves the possibility that fuel and chemicals can leak into the sea. Knowing there was a chance of a spill, as the ship was rotated, engineers monitored the water quality.
As I live my life and travel my path, I realize that while I may heal old patterns, there is always the possibility new challenges will arise. As I wrote about earlier, some days are great and others, I feel like I'm being swept against the rocks. And I know that the challenges serve their purpose so I don't want to avoid them necessarily. What I CAN do is prepare for the ebb and flow - for the fuel leak, for the toxic chemicals.
And, just like the ship's engineers, I will have to monitor the quality of my thoughts and the choices I make as I take inspired action. I have to be aware of the people I choose to spend time with. If I notice a friend is always complaining when we're together, I can either redirect the conversation or choose to spend less time with her/him.
I also have to be aware of the words I'm using. I was reading something Dr. Bernie Siegel wrote recently about word choice. He mentioned noticing how often we say "I have to." "I have to pay the bills." "I should exercise today." Changing "I have to" to "I get to" brings a different emotional feeling to the task.
If I say, "I get to pay the bills", I notice that my feeling is more about gratitude than dread. If I mention that "I get to go to the gym today", I feel excited about the opportunity to exercise.
Making a regular practice in using these tools, regardless of how I feel, is where the power lies. They highlight the subtle nuances that our choices can make and the energy we attach to the challenges.
Life events are about growth and expansion. They are here to serve a purpose, however, we do not need to spend lengthy amounts of time with a broken hull, rusting and decaying. We can take the lesson and move on.
So, today, I set the intention to let go of my need to be right and choose happiness instead.
"In reading the lives of great men, I found that the first victory they won was over themselves...self-discipline with all of them came first."
"Our repeated failure to fully act as we would wish must not discourage us. It is the sincere intention that is the essential thing, and this will in time release us from the bondage of habits which at present seem almost insuperable."
Knowing here in this moment that the abundant power and presence of all things is God, there is an awareness that there is no where that God is not. God is all Life. God is all Good. And as I know that, I embrace the presence of the Divine that flows around and in and through me. I am love and I am loved beyond measure.
Affirming the presence of the Divine is always available, filled with wisdom and grace, I step forward on my path, trusting each decision I make leads me toward my highest and best good. I am always at choice and choose to use words that affirm my good, my prosperity, my health, my abundance and my joy. In each moment, I need only turn within to find that I am guided with a gentle hand. I let the ease of life flow through me and the excitement of opportunities fill my heart and mind.
And as I let excitement and anticipation roll over me, I am filled with gratitude that my highest and best is always at hand. The Universe has my back and always says Yes! in support of my thoughts and I am thankful.
Releasing my Word to the Divine action of the Law, I am at peace knowing it is already done. A way is made out of no way. And I let it be so. And so it is. Amen.