No one has ever said it better than Mr. Vonnegut: "You are what you pretend to be, so be careful about what you pretend to be."
When you don't know what to do, my best advice is to do nothing until clarity comes. Getting still, being able to hear your own voice and not the voice of the world, quickens clarity. Once you decide what you want, make a commitment to that decision.
One of my favorite quotes is from Mountaineer W. H. Murray:
"Until one is committed there is hesitancy, the chance to draw back, always ineffectiveness. Concerning all acts of initiative (and creation), there is one elementary truth, the ignorance of which kills countless ideas and splendid plans: that the moment one definitely commits oneself, then Providence moves, too. All sorts of things occur to help one that would never otherwise have occurred. A whole stream of events issues from the decision, raising in one's favor all manner of unforeseen incidents and meetings and material assistance, which no man could have dreams would have come his way. I have learned a deep respect for one of Goethe's couplets: "Whatever you can do, or dreams you can, begin it. Boldness has genius, power and magic in it."
Make a decision and watch your life move forward.
You may as well know, also, that every great leader, from the dawn of civilization down to the present, was a dreamer. If you do not see great riches in your imagination, you will never see them in your bank balance.
"Hitler may have lost the war on the battlefield, but he ended up winning something too," says Marek Halter, "because man in the twentieth century created the concentration camp and revived torture and taught his fellow man that it is possible to close their eyes to the misfortunes of others."
Perhaps he is right: There are abandoned children, massacred children, innocent people imprisoned, lonely old people, drunks in the gutter, madmen in power.
But perhaps he isn't right at all, for there are also Warriors of the Light.
And Warriors of the Light never accept what is unacceptable.
What I know for sure: When you define yourself by the things you can acquire rather than see what you really need to be happy and fulfilled, you're not just living beyond your means or overextending yourself. You're living a lie.
That's why being burdened with bills feels so awful.
You are being untrue to yourself. When you free yourself from debt, you create space to purchase with purpose - to add to your life things that are meaningful.
...I know for sure that you enjoy everything a lot more when you're not overreaching. This is how you know you've shopped smart. You bring home a purchase, there's not a tinge of remorse, and whatever you got feels better to you ten days later than it did when you first bought it.
I hope the way you spend your money is in line with the truth of who you are and what you care about. I hope that your money brings joy to you and the ones you love. And I hope you use it as a powerful force for good to fulfill your best intentions.
In Don Miguel Ruiz's book, "The Four Agreements," the final agreement is just that: Always do your best. I know for sure that this is the most fulfilling path to personal freedom. Your best varies from day to day, Ruiz says, depending on how you're feeling. No matter. Give your best in every circumstance so that you have no reason to judge yourself and create guilt and shame. Live so that at the end of each day, you can say, "I did my very best." That's what it means to excel at the great work of living your best life.
I'd like you to keep something in mind. Always look up. Learn all the cool, wondrous, mind-boggling shit you can. Stretch your mind til it throbs. Seek out those who are much better than you. Grind your bones in pursuit of your chosen craft. Just don't miss what's in plain sight.
I let go of everything not divinely designed for me, and the perfect plan of my life now comes to pass.
What is mine by Divine Right can never be taken from me.
I follow the magic path of intuition and find myself in my Promised Land, under grace.
I give thanks that I now bring forth from the Universal Substance everything that satisfies all the righteous desires of my heart.
The Divine Design of my life now comes to pass. I now fill the place that I can fill and no one else can fill. I now do the things which I can do and no one else can do.
I am fully equipped for the Divine Plan of my life; I am more than equal to the situation.
All doors now open for happy surprises and the Divine Plan of my life is speeded up under grace.
I know for sure that what we dwell on is who we become -- as a woman thinks, so she is. If we absorb hour upon hour of images and messages that don't reflect our magnificence, it's no wonder we walk around feeling drained of our life force. If we tune in to dozens of acts of brutality every week, it shouldn't surprise us that our children see violence as an acceptable way to resolve conflict.
Become the change you want to see -- those are words I live by. Instead of belittling, uplift. Instead of demolishing, rebuild. Instead of misleading, light the way so that all of us can stand on higher ground.
My name is Michelle. I have six children and 7 grandchildren. This blog is about what I have learned in my 52 years here. So far, it's this simple - I thought I needed to figure out everything - turns out I don't.