Shadow puppets, secret chocolate, and crumbs in the bed...
Like lots of us here in the UK, I'm back online after a few days of power cuts and a little peek into how it might have been to live in a time before the existence of every modern convenience...First takeaway: the modern world is such a great place to be!
Warm baths, clean hair, hot food...Toast!
As I sat there the first night, polishing up my shadow-puppetry skills by the light of a candle and dropping bits from the banana sandwich I'd cobbled together in the dark onto my cocoon of blankets, I got musing:
When the lights go out, and suddenly there's only you, your shadow puppet duck friend and crumbs in the bed - what then?
Well, from my brief voyage into a world where all power from the outside had stopped coming in, I can confidently say that our focus shrinks down to the simple basics - like, how can I stay warm? What nourishment is available? How can I support my family best right now?
All this (of course...) led me to a little something we've been exploring here at Commit To Joy HQ for a while now...
Because, well, when any power supply from outside (and that's anything we believe is responsible for keeping us feeling warm, or supported, or topped up with anything we think we need) is cut off, we have some choices to make.
We can choose panic, and believe that we are bereft, in need, or play victim (say, to a personified weather condition brandishing knives and stomping in high heels all over our cosy reality: 'Storm Eunice carves a deadly trail across Europe' was a recent news headline...)
Or, we get to sit in the darkness (which is actually a lot cosier than we might have thought) and realise: I can feel warm, peaceful, cosy, safe and supported, even without those externally-provided things.
Oh, they're nice, and I love and appreciate them mightily, but (light flashing in the darkness moment) they aren't the source of my ultimate happiness and contentment.
What?! But vacuum cleaners (to sort out the soot blown down the chimney and all over the living room)?! Cheese toasties?! Bu-bu-bubble baths..?!
Well yes, AND - from a place of discomfort, or fear, I can take a breath, and cultivate a feeling of peace.
I can draw on my practice and remember that I can choose to connect with the only place that will never run out of anything I truly need.
This is the place that feels like home, the place where I remember that what I really need in any situation is actually right here.
And it's not the generator in the garage, or the last box of matches at the back of the kitchen drawer, or even the secret bar of chocolate you had stashed away for emergencies - nope!
It's your own ever-powerful, infinitely-connected, right-under-your-nose-all-along, warm and beautiful Heart.
This is the only thing that will truly never run out on you, the only thing that will never switch off or disappear...So a good idea to make friends with your Heart so you can make the most of all it has to offer, you'd think?!
And like any relationship, it takes time to make friends with our Heart - we turn up consistently when we say we will, we develop trust. We listen.
This is the practice of showing up for ourselves - first and foremost. It's the practice of making yourself and your connection to your own Truest Essence a priority in your own Life, so that it doesn't matter what is or what isn't being offered to you from any external source - whatever the conditions outside, you feel connected, safe and fully-resourced.
And so when darkness falls, or the storm rages and there's chaos of any kind showing up in our Lives, you know beyond anything else what matters most - it's your connection to YOU.
This is Unconditional Love - giving to yourself space and time and presence, and crucially, being open to receive this too.
This is Unconditional You, your truest essence embodied and alive in the world.
It means You, no matter what.
So from there - the Heart of it All - we get into the practice of asking ourselves the same simple questions I was asking myself in the dark:
What would bring me most comfort or warmth right now? What can I offer myself that would provide the most nourishment, most support, most yumminess?
Do you regularly ask yourself these kinds of simple, basic questions?
Are you in regular connection with your own power supply, so that whatever happens on the outside - with your children, your loved ones, your work, your world - you are able to hold a strong sense of connection to yourself, to your Heart?
Because only then can you show up for yourself - and so ultimately for everyone and everything - as fully as you can.
You know that without this connection - which is our own responsibility to practise and cultivate - we have no truly powerful Anything to offer anyone else at all?
My own real, lived experience has led me to this practice, this Knowing, this post - with the hardest-feeling things, when I thought my Heart was breaking, actually being the invitations to go deeper into what Love means than I ever thought was possible.
(You guessed already this was about more than just power cuts, hey?!)
So, I'm now writing this to you from the Future, where there are computers, and hot water, and All The Things - and the message from this place of luxury, delicious distraction and sophisticated technology of all kinds is:
1. Keep it simple.
2. Your own Heart comes first.
3. Everyone else benefits from you choosing You.
4. Everything you could ever desire is already here, always ready for when you remember to slow down enough, say Yes to your own beautiful self, and gently turn towards your own Heart, your truest shiniest self, and the power-full Love that you already are.
And with that - cheese toastie, anyone?
Let me know what resonates for you in the comments - your messages and comments always bring light into my day x with Love beaming brightly your way - whatever the current power supply status - and In Joy,
Ps. f you'd like to experience what it might be like to relax into a space purely for yourself, connecting with your Heart and truest essence, you might like to join us on our upcoming Radiant Heart mini retreat, which also includes the opportunity to experience a complimentary month of Joy Genius membership,and all the goodies that entails. Check out the links, and do get in touch if it calls to you x