Friday, July 30, 2010

North, East, South and West

A few of the books I have read, and most specifically "The Betrayal Bond" by Patrick Carnes, have included this guided imagery exercise I thought might be helpful to you.  I am doing a lot of thinking about these, these days.

Get yourself in a quiet safe space.  Get out your favorite pen and your journal.  If you do not have a safe place, a great pen, and a journal, get on that, will you?  Come back when you're ready.

Write down "North." North is the direction of the winter winds.  Facing its challenges requires courage, endurance and resilience.  Ask your higher power and ask your quiet self, what are your challenges, where do you need to be strong, patient and resilient?  What do you need the courage to face in the direction of the winter winds?  Write it down.

Write down "East."  East is the direction of our glorious rising sun.  A new day.  A new beginning.  Genesis.  Ask your higher power and ask your quiet self, what do you need to start in your life and not put off any longer?  Write it down.

Write down "South." South is the direction of the summer sun and the direction of cultivation and growth.  Ask your higher power and ask your quiet self, what needs your attention?  What do you need to grow or heal?  Write it down.

Write down "West."  West is the direction of the setting sun and the direction of endings.  Ask your higher power and your quiet self, what do you need to bring to a close?  Is there someone you need to say goodbye to?  What have you been unwilling to end and you know it is time to end it.  Write it down.

Now gaze upward to the sky.  Look down and read over your list.  Read it out loud.  Let your soul take in what it must do.

Our main business is not to see what lies dimly at a distance, but to do what clearly lies at hand.  Thomas Carlye

I am working on mine.  I think it's a great exercise to do every six months.  First I am answering the questions.  My next step is to make a plan for how to take care of them.  Some are easy.  The "West" is really hard for me but I know, it's time.

"The glance of mercy." It's a Buddhist phrase, looking at others with acceptance and understanding.

I think first, you need to give yourself the glance of mercy.  If you can practice loving kindness and understanding and acceptance of yourself, the peace that comes out of that blooms into graceful compassion for others.

I am working on this.  The glance of mercy for writergirldreams.

At fifty-one, I am surprised to find it is still an integral part of my work for myself.

I don't know if it was the plan, but I surely know, this path I am on right now is the highest archaeology of self I have ever done.  Every day revealing my highest gifts and strengths, and taking me down to my knees to see my most vulnerable, fragile self.

You know when you are flying with your kids?  They give you the safety instructions and tell you in case of an emergency, put your oxygen mask on first, and then your kids.

This is the metaphor for my life right now.

Putting my mask on first.

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