Life can be so strange and unexpected. All of a sudden it presents us with a task that appears overwhelming, too big, a little unfair and altogether simply too much.
But what to do, we soldier on, gather some pity and encouragement on the way and rest in the assurance that this too shall pass. If we just keep going, it will all be over soon and then life as we know it can be resumed.
This is a very natural and widely accepted approach of dealing with challenging situations in our lives. We will be supported and applauded for not complaining too much. No need to bother anyone, no need to cause too much of a fuss, things will go back to normal soon. The best is to focus on a time in the future, a time after the “situation”.
Going through life in this way requires strength and focus, it requires a tireless effort to function in the present while essentially living for the future.
I have gone through life like this. I have felt strong and competent, proud to be functioning and getting over and on with it. And yet I was mainly experiencing exhaustion or a sense of dread when I had some time to rest. I spent lots of energy in getting to this point in the future and once I got there, I felt nothing, all was numb. This numbness left everything a little dull and ultimately senseless, leading me to question what this life is all about.
I didn’t know what I wanted, I just knew I wanted more, I wanted different.
I realized that I wanted to somehow participate in my life right now rather than to hope for better, for other times.
But how does one live in the now? The present?
People speak of living in the present as if it was natural and easy. Well, in my experience, it is not. It requires practice and great courage.
The past is all that we have gathered on our way, each experience, each learning. Our past is growing with each moment we spend here. Our teachings are available to us instantly and yet we never feel quite ready or prepared.
When living in the present, the present is eternity.
There is no postponing, all and everything is simply as it is, nothing to be improved, nothing to be enhanced, changed, or adapted. No more waiting to be “ready”, for the “right” moment. It basically means no more hiding, no more excuses.
To simply show up and let life to happen to me, penetrate me, to allow it to find it`s expression through me. Being present, being available, flexible.
It is the courage to no longer wait for an invitation but rather to feel welcome simply because I am here. The courage to trust that I am in the right place at the right time. Always.
Courage can not be summoned, is what catches fire when I finally decide to show up for this life, no matter what it is I am invited to face. Courage is me allowing myself to become alive.
In my life I have prayed for courage, I have bowed to it and I have felt endless gratitude for the Power it has unleashed in me, for the Joy and Passion it brings into my life, for the excitement and ecstasy I feel ignited with when I come alive.
To courage, may it catch fire in you again and again and again.
Eliza Charu Hermsdorf
Co-Founder of DIMA Mallorca, A Centre for Conscious Living
Mediator and Conflict counselor at MediateBerlin