There was a time not too long ago when I thought I had lost everything, including myself.
This was a period of darkness I had never known.
When I caught a glimpse of my own image in the mirror, I did not recognize myself. I had lost my enthusiasm for being, for caring and for any faith that I might ever find my way back again.
But one day when I was feeling particularly sorry for myself, I had the “aha moment” of all epiphanies. The reason I was so lost was because I had been searching much too hard for things that I did not even need or want in the first place. And the reason that I was feeling so empty and unfulfilled was because I was too filled up with ideas and pursuits that were never mine to begin with.
So I began anew.
Yes, after decades of trying to keep up with the Joneses in every respect, whoever they happened to be at any given time or geographic interval, I simply let go.
I let go of the need to surround myself with “yes” people and with those who only seemed to appreciate, listen, or love me when I fit their rigid standards and expectations.
I also stopped desperately expecting anything from anyone else, including from myself.
By giving up all false expectations, approval from others, and by filling myself up with self-love . . .only then, was I able to give things away, which has made me gain so much more in all areas of my life.
These can be deemed as physical, emotional, spiritual and material things.
What is important is that when I started to give more and free myself to give up my need for ownership of anything or anyone, I began to start organically receiving everything that I had always longed for, deep in my mind’s heart and soul.
Here is my Daily Mantra for a Giving Life so that you might start a truly living life:
If you want anyone to love you truly and faithfully, then you must love them truly and faithfully first, without expecting anything at all in return.
If you are unhappy and want to be happy and joyous once again, then you must first attempt to bring happiness and joy to others. Only then can you bask in the gift and breadth of happiness that is both pure and lasting.
If you want your talents, achievements and accomplishments to be revered, recognized and received, then you must first look up from your ego and notice the wonders and miracles that others are already sharing.
If you want to live a life of abundance, light and prosperity, then you must first give whatever you can to others who live in sorrow and who may be suffering much more than you are.
If you want to pursue any dream at all, no matter how impossible or farfetched, you must first give up the constant pressure and fear that you feel, and believe that your dreams will inevitably come true without any doubt, as your thoughts become your life.
If you want the respect, love and admiration of your children, family, friends and your lover, then you must first do something that is respectful, loving and worth admiring.
If you want to be free, peaceful and without worry, then you must first help to free others of worry even if only for a second. This can be done with a smile, a hug, a tap on the shoulder, and by truly listening to and seeing the lack of freedom that they suffer through themselves.
If you want to feel healthy, young and energetic, then you must first give up the attachments and addictions to an unhealthy and unspiritual life.
If you want to feel powerful, strong and invincible, then you must first give up your desire to always feel powerful, strong and invincible.
If you want to live fearlessly, then you must first do fearless things in the face of utter and painful fears.
Throw off the sails on the ship that is your life and stare straight into the abyss of not knowing what will or will not be.
Fear means you are alive.
Fatigue and resistance to fear means you are barely surviving.
It is not what happens to you, it is what you do with what happens to you that matters.
In kind, it is not up to others to make you happy, true happiness can only begin with you.
In heart, it is not how much others love you; it is how much love you are willing to give to others.
In the physical world, it is not about how many things you can boast of having in the end or the beginning of your life, but how many things you are willing to give up so that you can be more free.
These are the truths of a peaceful life.
These are the blessings of a gracious spirit.
Everything that you want that is worthwhile and amazing is at your grasp…if you are only willing to free yourself from desperation and ownership of any kind.
Abundance in all regards comes from one truth…that it is only when you are willing to set things free that you can truly be free.
Five years ago, I decided that I would envision only the wonders that I wanted my life to be, and since then, I have achieved each and every dream.
I also began say Thank You out loud each time I was faced with a challenge, and looked at them as opportunities rather than as tragedies.
The more that I learned to set myself free from desperation, fear and longing, the more that I learned to live in the present moment, which now is simply wonderful at any given time because I feel grateful to be in it.
Life is what you make it.
If not you . . .
than who else?
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Ed: Brianna Bemel