Do you ever wonder if you’re on the right track?
Do you sometimes struggle to find meaning and purpose in your life? Have you ever thought, “Is this as good as it gets?”
If you answered “yes” to any of these questions, you are not alone.
I recently lost two dear friends to suicide and their tragic and untimely deaths shook me to my core. I not only had to deal with the pain of losing them, but it forced me to take a deeper look at how I was choosing to live my life.
I was placing so much importance on what other people thought and getting most of my worth from the external world—my career, financial success, material possessions, appearance, validation from social media, you name it.
Like many people, I didn’t really know who I was on the inside. My identity was so wrapped in my job title, relationship status, and my looks.
We all know that if we want strong physical muscles, we need to move our bodies so we don’t get flabby. But what about our emotional muscles?
How do we combat emotional flabbiness and stay spiritually fit and strong?
The answer for me was found by going within. By getting still, removing distractions, and learning to listening to my inner guide. Maybe for you that’s a “higher self,” an infinite intelligence, god, spirit, universe—whatever you want to call it, we all have a brilliant wisdom deep within us that has all the answers.
We just have to learn how to hear it.
One of my favorite ways to do this is by going on a walking meditation.
I live on the Hudson River, right across from Manhattan, and there is a beautiful track right there where I go for guidance. I don’t meet with a sage, teacher, or coach—instead, I take myself on a walk.
It doesn’t matter where you go for your walk, but I find it inspiring to be surrounded by beauty and nature. You can listen to music or go earphone-free, and listen only to that inner guide.
While moving your body at a comfortable, effortless pace, ask yourself this: “If you take away money, what other people think, geography, and all other external circumstances—what do you really want to do?”
Let your heart, not your mind, answer. You should hear a response almost immediately. Don’t edit, judge, or try to resist what comes up. When I asked myself this question, the answer blew me away.
I wanted everything that I tell myself and others I don’t want.
I pride myself on being a fiercely independent career woman with my own money, and—up until very recently—a huge part of my identity was wrapped up in being a single woman who is open to a life partner but doesn’t want to get married or have children.
So when I asked myself this question and my heart answered, “I want to be a wife and mother,” I began to weep.
This walking meditation exercise has opened me to myself in such a profound way and I know it can do the same for others.
It proves that we often do things in life in the name of what we think we want, should do, what society deems as worthy, what others will think or are impressed by, and so on.
I love this exercise because it’s fun, easy, free, and can be done at any time. Once we get clear on our heart’s true desires, we can go back and do a sitting meditation, asking what inspired action steps to take.
When we get quiet, go within, clear ourselves from distractions, and ask for divine guidance, it is always available to us. It’s like a computer file that cannot be deleted.
We just have to choose to download it, and keep on downloading it.