With the worldwide situation full of uncertainty and suffering, the idea for these emails (begun in April 2020 which have now become a podcast) came to me … to share a bit of Light in the Dark … with anyone interested.
My intention is to pass along what brought me through to the other side of a long, incredibly difficult decade in hopes that these ideas may, perhaps, be of service to you on your path.
I’m sharing from a mindset of one who is not an expert – one whose mindset is of an eternal student; the longer I live, the less I realize I know (and the more I have to learn). And, I do not consider my path through profound hardship to be the ‘right’ way; it is what worked for me hence I offer ideas to you in case they resonate.
After years of illness, it was little changes, incrementally added to my life, that slowly changed (and continue to change) my thinking and habits which added up to a changed life. Seems like bunk alas ‘tis true.
At times, I felt stymied, caught in a gooey mess of fear, unable to accomplish projects (or even get minor tasks done). Overwhelmed and hurting, time floated past. Sometimes, that was ok; other times, Action as merited.
Hence, this week, as I spun in circles, I leaned back into an important learning from one of my treasured books which aided my return to the well-side.
The Obstacle is the Way by Ryan Holiday is a book which I highly recommend (here on Amazon – or at a used book site or wherever – https://www.amazon.com/Obstacle-Way-Timeless-Turning-Triumph/dp/1591846358). It describes how to turn adversity to advantage and the ‘Get Moving’ takeaway has been simple yet valuable to me.
Ryan Holiday describes how those defying the odds use obstacles, find an opportunity & GO. How or when isn’t that important; they start (um, pretty much anywhere), gain momentum, and make it work (even with a heap of problems that seem insurmountable. Can you see why this book resonated for me!?)
Amelia Earhart was given as an example of ‘Get Moving’ or ‘Action’ (my words) in this book. Earhart’s great desire was aviation yet, in the 1920s, women were not considered pilot material (so she was a social worker). However, when she was called and asked to pilot the first female, transatlantic flight after their first choice backed out, she was told she wouldn’t fly the plane (her 2 male chaperones would). Also, the male pilots’ compensation would be significant (and she’d not be compensated) and she might die in the process… And, guess what she said to this. She said, YES. 5 years later, Earhart was the first woman to fly a solo, nonstop transatlantic flight and became famous worldwide. Perhaps her incredible achievements wouldn’t have happened if she’d not agreed and pressed on (alas, maybe she’d have found an opening by taking Action elsewhere).
Starting (wherever) and taking one step to the next, and the next, and the next is how anything is achieved (although sometimes I lose sight of this); a thousand mile journey is, after all, 1 step after another, after another, after another.
After receiving stem cells about 10 years into illness, I felt miniscule progress which I decided to build upon (because, frankly, I felt out of other options). Following my instincts (that I’d mostly ignored in my past), I took small (sometimes nearly infinitesimal), daily (achievable) steps, in what seemed a right direction. In the years before then, I listened to and followed the advice of many who seemed to know how I’d best heal. As wellness hadn’t arrived on the scene for me using this tact, I began bit-by-bit following my instincts (or, as I call them, Divine Downloads).
In 2017, when my situation seemed hopeless, I felt it was time to take daily Action on my gut and do what felt right to me (finally). Slowly, day by day, I took tiny Actions, with less asking other people’s feedback, and saw incremental progress that, almost imperceptibly, added up. If I’d waited for conditions to be just right, or until I felt ready (I didn’t) or made more excuses, I believe I’d still be ill.
I devoted myself to healing in a new way (for me) by praying (much) and spending chunks of time reading (or listening to audiobooks) which enabled me to, bit by bit, think and take action – differently which brought me to well (thanks, too, to Divine grace).
Taking small Actions that resonated for me helped me discern my path (or helped me redirect myself when needed). Daily repetition (mini-Actions) slowly changed me. Twice daily, I wrote (& still write) my goal statement and listen to Voice Loop (an app in Apple store which loops recordings) of me reading my goal statement. Sometimes I get behind; I catch up when I can. It’s more about the process than perfection. I aim to keep at it. Nearly every day.
Eventually, after healing, applying Action as described here led to success in the business realm as well.
As Plato noted ‘Good Actions give strength to ourselves and inspire good Actions in others.’
Little by little, a little becomes a lot, dear one.
With my gratitude to you for reading (or listening to) this, my hope for your wellness as you journey through these difficult times, my prayers for healing in our world and my faith in the Power in you,
Original Email Date April 24, 2020
Click to listen to audio podcast of above post