Friday, December 4, 2009

Ask to Receive

Dearest Readers,

One of the reasons this blog is called Cultivate Your Courage is because cultivating courage is a practice that I need to keep up. I would love to be the person who is writing everyday about how fearless I am but instead I come to you today, humbly, with fear kicking my butt.

The inspiration I hope to offer you comes from the fact that I refuse to let it win.

Despite the fact that I've been taking good care of myself I continue to feel fatigued this week. When I'm tired the fear rears its ugly head.

A friend of mine sent me an excellent quote by Friedrich Nietzsche who apparently said, "When we are tired, we are attacked by ideas we conquered long ago.”

This was a good thing for me to hear because I'm now being attacked by negative thinking that I have overcome in the past. Old BS (Old Belief System).

Last night, I decided to flip back through my journal for inspiration. I had just finished writing the day's entry on the very last page and whenever I get to the end of a book I like to look back to see where I've been and how I've changed.

I found an entry from the summer, wherein I'd written that one of my new goals was to "practice joy". A-ha! I'd forgotten about that.

How does one practice joy when she feels like a slug? That's like saying to a depressed person, "Just get off the couch!" It's a whole lot easier said than done.

This is where asking for help comes in. Because left to my own devices, I will choose to remain a slug. I will stay on the couch. My fear will keep me stuck. Asking for help is a panacea.

Whom do we ask? I usually start with the Higher Power, the Creator, the Great Spirit.

"My desire is to practice joy today but I am tired and my fear is threatening to win. Please help me to find my way to freedom from fatigue and fear. Show me what to do. I am willing to receive guidance. I am willing to change and be changed."

If immediate guidance is not received we can try a human being who loves and supports us unconditionally. Not the person who's going to try to make it better, give us a solution, force an answer. Not the person who talks instead of listens. Not the person by whom we feel judged or whom we judge. Remember we are asking for help!

Who is the person who knows how to practice active and compassionate listening? Or the one who reminds us how well we're doing despite the fact that we may not be feeling 100%? These are the people we reach out to for support.

A friend of mine from Montreal used to say, "Some days are better than others." This was a HUGE help. It reminded me that I'm not perfect. That I can be having a great run and then something can shift and I'm struggling again. The struggle doesn't mean failure. It means opportunity.

Inspiring Message of the Day: I will use the fact that I am struggling as an opportunity to change. Instead of succumbing to fear I will ask for help. When I share my burden it is always lessened. We're not alone!

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