When It Is Time To Reinvent Ourselves
By Bruce Davis, Ph.D.
At one time or another almost everyone has to reinvent themselves. With the loss of work, partner, or simply growing older, circumstances change and we must change too. Children leave home and parents must fill up their home and lives with something new. Retirement calls and we do not know what to do. Injury or illness clamps down on our activities. A best friend moves away. The world changes and our world has to change along with it. Its time to reinvent ourselves.
We begin needing to acknowledge our feelings. There is fear, anxiousness and yes, hopelessness. Suddenly we have something taken away. We feel naked. Our identity; body, mind and heart are soaking in the unexpected and unwanted news. Something is happening that is not our choosing. Where do we start? How do we get beyond reacting and begin making new life? Where do we go? What should we be doing? There are a thousand questions in these times instead of our normal confidence in having lots of answers.
While seemingly everything is shifting around us, being mindful, giving our attention to the moment, lessens the impact of what we are losing. As we are proactive, our fear is less active. Being present with ourselves, one another, living in the moment during this time can be a major ally. Being aware of the now, can help us from slipping into the past including old wounds and worries. Practicing being present helps us from falling backwards or looking away from where we are.
With mindfulness practice we want to practice heartfulness. This is meditation where the fear and hurt are limited as we experience the sea of greater being inside of us. Underneath the stream of thoughts there is a body of peace. Mindfulness is heartfulness as the presence underneath our thoughts is recognized and experienced. We want to feel the presence beneath the busy mind, the presence of our heart. At first the waves of thought seem to be crashing over the quiet ocean underneath. As we let go, with patience, practice, focus we receive our heart essence. We relax. Our awareness expands into a beautiful vastness. It is this vastness we find within our heart which decreases the immensity of our thoughts and rebuilds our confidence. As our awareness spreads out in an unlimited horizon within, we rediscover limitless life possibilities. The vast landscape found in meditation unlocks the limited choices and worries which seemingly control us. The vastness we find in heartfulness opens our heart and mind to life’s infinite potential. We are coming back to our selves, including our heart intelligence.
Heartfulness is more then an important meditation. It is giving attention to the choices we are making in daily life. Walks in nature, dates with good friends are part of creating positive days and positive people around us. Heartfulness begins with anything and everything we do to nurture our hearts and nourish our lives. The world has unplugged something important to us. We want to plug into what is true and real. As we breathe, heal, and turn to heartfulness, new beginnings begin happening.
Now more then ever, life is a practice of giving and receiving. We want to be open and available for the golden moments which come in small and grand ways. Every smile, beautiful sky, warm word we give and receive are reminding us of our essential wholeness. The support and love are affirming our ground of being. Here is where the seeds of life, the creative instinct take over. Heartfulness is becoming aware of the presence of heart within and surrounding us. We are coming back to our source, the divine gardener, the inventor, magician, our inner child full of spontaneous intuition and wisdom. We should not be surprised that good things seem to be coming to us.
Reinventing ourselves is absorbing life’s heart essence. It is heart essence which frees our awareness from disappointment, giving real freedom. It is our source of inspiration. The presence within us is giving the true joy which makes life worth living.
Reinventing ourselves is one of the most frightening and enlightening experiences we can have. In time of transition the mind is making lists. There is so much to do. But the heart says wait, take me with you. Whether we are believers or not, there is a state of grace. Life has many endings and new beginnings. Ego death is part of the path of liberation in all the mystical traditions. It is our life of heartfulness which puts us in the seat of our soul. Life is reorganized, aligned, made whole and complete. New doors open, seemingly automatically, naturally. Our trust is growing again one step after another. Before we know it, we are reinventing our self.
Bruce is retreat leader at Silent Stay Retreats near Napa welcoming people of all traditions in to the wisdom of the quiet heart retreats.