Channeling My Inner Ludo ~ Calling The Rocks

Metaphor warning! This post is going to be filled with some heavy metaphors, because sometimes, that’s just the way that my mind works. This morning, I was sitting at my table pondering several things, and for some reason, the image of Ludo from “Labyrinth” popped to mind. When the going got tough, good old Ludo cocked his head back and let out series of deep, throaty howls to summon the rocks. In several scenes of the movie, just when things seem to be at their very bleakest, he howls from deep inside, and rocks of all sizes come rolling to the rescue.

As I sat thinking about Ludo, it inspired me to be a bit more like him, and summon my own rocks. There has been a lot to wade through lately, and I’ll admit that at times I’ve felt like I’m barely keeping my head above water. Then, this morning I started to wonder where my inner fire had gone and it occurred to me that I have everything that I need to reignite it. Instead of being mired down by things which are completely out of my control, I’m tipping my head back and howling.

One of my favorite scenes of the movie has always been the one in which the group of travelers find themselves in the Bog of Eternal Stench, and Sarah is hanging by a vine over the middle of the bog, with no way out. This is when Ludo howls for the rocks to come, and Sir Didymous (the fox looking knight) really gives him the business about howling when someone needed rescued, as he, himself, is just standing there panicking. Then, the rocks start rolling in, making a walkway through the bog, so that Sarah and the rest of the gang can wend their way across.

Step by step, they make their way through that perilous part of their journey. How fitting is it that when they found themselves in the Bog of Eternal Stench that the way out was to summon these steady rocks and make their way through it, one step at a time? I’m thinking about my own steps across this part of my own journey, and have been coming up with individual names for my “rocks”. I’ll be sure to pave alternate pathways so that there are choices in direction. Too much pigeon-holing is not a good thing. The road to happy-town needs to have a few exits! 🙂

Here are the names of my stepping stones:

  • Resolve- to keep going
  • Courage- to stay aware of the fact that I can do what is right for me
  • Self reliance- to keep the knowledge that I can trust myself alive
  • Patience- tempered with a hefty dose of strength
  • Joy- for what is
  • Hope- for what is to come
  • Love- for the opportunity to make the most of the life that I have, and to make a difference
  • Compassion- for others, and for myself

I’ll be working on summoning my inner rocks to pave a path which feels more stable. More than anything right now, I’m craving a feeling of contentment and stability, an overall sense of my place in the world. For some reason, I’ve been having a tough time regaining that sense for myself, and I miss it more than anything. So…let the howling begin! What would you name the rocks for your own pathway?

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Choice

I was falling short of inspiration for today’s post, so I went on Pinterest, scouring for journaling prompts. Some of the most amazing ones that I found all came from the same site, Journaling Sage. It was difficult to pick one, because there are so many great ones on the site. The one that I finally selected was:

What choice can you make today to be more free?

This question is perfect for me right now. The feeling of freedom is something which I’ve been reaching out for more and more. I’ve been making a lot of choices in the name of freedom this year. Some of them haven’t been the easiest to do, yet all of them have been necessary in one way or another.

For today however, I’m choosing the freedom to choose. I choose to give myself permission to feel what I feel, to do what feeds the higher parts of myself, to stand tall in my right to not only give respect but to receive it, and to release guilt associated with doing what’s best or necessary for me even when it means saying no.

This may seem elementary to some of you, but for others of us it isn’t always so simple. When wading through these waters, there is a lot of self discovery which takes place. With some much appreciated help, I recently discovered that somewhere along the way I had given away some of my power in the area of how I permit others to treat and speak to me. While I know exactly where this loss occurred, there is no need to share that here because to do so would only serve to give a negative impression of people from the fairly distant past. Doing that is something which I do not desire to do, nor is it my job. They do/have done a fine enough job of that on their own.

Sometimes it is difficult to get to the bottom of our needs. I am always grateful when I am able to recognize areas of my life which need some adjustment in order for me to be lighter and happier. The choice has been made, and I feel better already just for being able to see what had been going on and knowing that it is perfectly within my power to change it. That’s one of the many beautiful things about life…that we always have a choice.

What choice will you make today?

 

 

 

My Turn

First off, let me start by writing a little bit about why I have this blog and who I am as a person. The point of this blog is to put out expressions of personal thoughts, experiences, and even creative writing which are (for the most part) positive and moving or entertaining. There have been times in which I’ve come here and talked a little about the challenges in my life. With that being said, the point of those posts have always been to convey the valuable lessons I’ve been provided through the challenges or to demonstrate the truth that we always have the ability to choose how we handle and/or react to things.

In a nutshell, I show up here to give encouragement or to share my love for poetry and creative writing. This is meant to be a positive space-a place where people drop in to be reminded that life is largely what we make it and to gather perspective for those times when it might be a little more difficult to remember that we can choose. Now, I’ll get to the point of the post which is reflected in the title…my turn.

I understand that people face many challenges in their lives and that our experience on this planet is one of learning. We gather wisdom and perspective along the way, and learn throughout the course of our time here how to handle the challenges which we will all be presented with. Difficulty walks through the door of every one of our lives, as do joy and triumph. My job here is not to become a sounding board for how much someone’s life sucks.

Let me repeat that- My job here is not to be a repository for anyone’s negative thoughts or outlook. As a matter of fact, I am going to come right out and say it…leave that stuff somewhere else. While looking for the silver lining in everything may not be everyone’s cup of tea, that’s how I live my life and that’s what this entire blog is about. This is my creation of a space of upliftment, sharing experiences with a positive twist, and creative expression. Of course we all need encouragement from time to time…yes, even me.

If you find yourself here and wish to state your case for how life keeps kicking you in the ass and that you have absolutely no say in the matter, this is not the place for you. As a matter of fact, I’ve had people who have been discouraged from expressing themselves in a more positive way because someone negative had beat them to the punch in the comments section. So, I am claiming this space for its intended purpose and if need be, I will turn comment moderation back on in order to get things back on track.

To be clear, there is a big difference between asking for a little support and grumbling about how you view your life as worse than just about everyone’s, and we all know the difference. So here I am asking you to respect the rules of engagement here, which are simple. No overt negativity and no arguing your case for why things are always stacked against you. As a person with more than her fair share of challenges, I can manage to come here five days a week and very rarely mention said challenges in a way which sounds like a woe is me statement.

From here on out, any comments which are overtly negative will not be replied to and will likely be deleted.

Meeting Life Halfway

Lately, I’ve been thinking a good bit about how much of a role we play in helping the Universe to honor our requests. Some people may call this praying, others making a wish, and others still something else. No matter what we choose to call it, the concept is the same. We have all at one time or another asked for help with something. There are all sorts of things which people ask for.

Being willing and ready to be proactive in our lives and not see ourselves as being “at the mercy of” fate (or another word of your choice) is important. Think of it this way. If I were to repeatedly ask to meet my soul mate, and then lament the fact that it wasn’t happening…yet, I sat in my home all the time working…would it be fair of me to be angry with the powers that be? No. Of course it wouldn’t. If my desire were to meet my soul mate, I’d have to put myself in a position for the universe to allow us to cross paths.

It’s the same with all areas of our lives. While I do not believe that we are in control of absolutely everything, I do believe that we have a much bigger role in our circumstances than many of us acknowledge. The point that I’m making here is that believing in miracles is something that I am all for. At the same time, I also believe that we often play a role in helping those miracles to manifest. It starts with our attitude and continues with our actions.

Some of you may think that I am contradicting the idea of having faith. The opposite is true. There is a difference between having faith and throwing your hands up in the air in frustration and waiting for someone else to handle it. Faith is made of two parts. Part one is believing that all things are possible. Part two is doing our part to get things moving in the right direction with both our thoughts and our actions. It’s kind of like ordering takeout. I could stand by my door all day wishing for someone to bring a delicious meal. Unless I pick up the phone or go online to place an order, I’m going to get pretty hungry.

On the other hand, let’s look at a scenario in which we wish for a better job. If I were to wish for a better job and start looking, yet I believed that there weren’t any to be found or that no one would hire me for the type of job that I desired, what do you think would happen? My negative beliefs about my ability to get a better job aren’t going to help my case. We all wield a lot more power than many of us believe. While sometimes things are out of our control, and ups and downs happen in all of our lives, we still have a choice in how we are going to choose to deal with them. There’s a lot to be said for the power of our convictions.

 

What’s The First Step In Helping Others?

There are a lot of people out there, myself included, who feel called to help others. Speaking from experience, as well as countless conversations with others who have a similar calling, there is a pretty high incidence of what can only be called burn out or self depletion which happens-especially in the early days of doing the work. Anyone who has ever flown will remember being told that the first step to take in the event of an emergency is to put on your own oxygen mask before attempting to help anyone else.

For some reason, while it makes sense to just about anyone that the advice is sound for those flying in an airplane, there seems to be a stigma around tending to self first in any other arena-especially when it comes to spiritual practitioners, healers or when it comes to doing any kind of service work. It doesn’t matter whether you’re flying, helping others spiritually, working as a healer or even in your personal relationships with others-if you aren’t caring for and tending to yourself, your efforts with others will not go as smoothly as they could. Not only that, but you will be setting the stage for exhaustion and even physical illness.

While this is true for everyone, those who have high levels of sensitivity and empathy should be especially vigilant about holding space for themselves on a regular basis. There will be people who will attempt to induce guilt, because they will feel as though they aren’t getting what it is that they need from you when they need it. Plus, chances are good that you’ve spent a lot of your life not tending to your own needs and when you change that, there will be some who will resent it. As with all things, we have to use discernment. There are always exceptions, such as when someone is in a true crisis or has a real emergency. As long as self-care and development are a regular part of our routine, the rest typically falls into place.

As time goes by, many begin to recognize that caring for ourselves and caring for others are not exclusive of one another. Culturally, there is a lot of training which takes place that tells us that we are selfish for tending to our own needs and even pleasures. The interesting thing which I have observed over the years is that it is often the ones which preach this concept of selfishness the most who look out for themselves the most. By getting others to do things on their schedule and according to their desires, they free up a lot of time to do what they want to do.

The important thing to remember is that not only is making sure that you are okay not selfish, it is the first step in being able to effectively help others. Not only that, it will ensure that we are not using service to others as a reason to avoid things that may not be all that easy to resolve within ourselves and in our own lives. As time goes by, caring for yourself gets easier as you begin to see the difference in the two ways of living. Not only will you feel better, but you will see that your ability to help others increases as you help yourself. The hardest part is giving yourself permission to let go of the feelings of guilt long enough to get started.

I’d like to leave you with one last thing to think about, to put this in perspective for those who really struggle with thinking about themselves or putting themselves first.

When you neglect yourself, how do you think that impacts the people in your life who truly love you and have your best interests at heart?