Lightness of Being

I want to talk about lightness of being and those who bring positivity into your life, promoting presence rather than absence. You know them, because they show up. They show up when you are happy, they show up when you’re not. They lend a hand when you need help, even if you haven’t asked, they accept your help when they need it themselves. They don’t play games with their existence in your life, in good times and bad. Most of all, they see your worth and they make sure you see it too.

Those are my people. They make me glow.

We all know “I can’t deal with the negative, so I pretend to be positive even though I’m miserable” people — I’m not talking about them. They haven’t found what they think they can fake it ’til they make. I hope they discover what they are looking for, although, in all honesty, I don’t think they can without recognizing and respecting the twisty part of themselves that resides in everyone.

Notice I didn’t say celebrate. Because you will encounter people who clasp habitual skepticism to their chest as a defining component of their personality. There’s nothing cool about true darkness of being. It doesn’t make you appear more intelligent. I want to say, “Isn’t that negativity heavy to carry around?” It’s heavy just being near it.

What you do with that that darker part and whether you choose to turn toward or away from it, characterizes who you are. Depression is prevalent in today’s world, most people have experienced it at one time or another — that is a mental health issue and not the subject of this article. I’m talking about basic personality in how you approach life, whether you seek a route of optimism or pessimism. I say seek, because most situations can be viewed through either a positive or negative lens. That’s a personal choice, how you pursue the elements of your life.

I seek to enrich my existence with those who know, through trial and error, that life can be hell but choose to take what they’ve learned and make their human experience better. Not only that, they encourage that in others.

Hold close those individuals you stumble across on this rocky road called life who enhance the best parts of you — they are in tune with the internal lightness within yourself. They see the areas where others revered negativity, recognize that was never you, and usher in their own beams of brightness to echo your own making everything around become luminous. They become part of your compass helping navigate the rocky road into a path to a happier you.

They are interested in digging deep, getting to know you — the real you — and they reflect back the brilliance they find, whether you have always had it or you are building it out of obscurity.  They see you. Your internal beacon of light clicks up a notch, or several notches, with each kindred spirit who sees the good in you and celebrates that. 

So take the boost of beautiful brightness you receive, bask in it, and then go shine your light on others. Show them that you see all they have to offer, their worth. Make them glow.


Get Out Of Your Comfort Zone!

I leave in two weeks on a research trip to Ireland. During the last six months — yes, SIX — since my last blog post, I have devoted all writing time to my novel, both writing scenes and researching newly significant moments in history my work-in-progress has led me to. No, I didn’t abandon you, dear readers. Sitting down to write a blog post, rather than giving my book the full attention it deserves would have been irresponsible with a research trip looming on the horizon. Every attempt at dividing my time also rose feelings of guilt, so I gave myself a hall pass and devoted my time where it was most needed.

I’ve reached a point, as of yesterday, in which I know I should postpone writing additional scenes of importance, structured within my outline, until I’ve gone to Belfast and County Clare and gathered the mandatory current and historical data necessary to move forward. You know what that means? I get to be with you!

Let’s talk about getting out of your comfort zone.

Part of a research trip is putting myself out there, in my case to strangers in another country — well, technically two countries, but let’s not get all political — in hopes that they will be willing to spend part of their valuable time helping me, a stranger to them. How can they determine my commitment to this project? I don’t have a string of novels behind my name, nor a huge online platform for them to check me out. I don’t tweet, post, or instagram as much someone who is developing their brand should. I’m not even sure I have a brand.

So, who am I, a fledgling writer, to email professionals in their field abroad and say “This is me, here’s what I’m doing. Can you please help?” Let me tell you, it’s scary as fuck.

But I do it anyway.

You may or may not be a writer, but we all have areas of our life in which you can either stick with what you have done, know, and feel comfortable with, or you can choose to reach out your hand and grab a new opportunity by your shaking, trepidatious fist. You may have begun to reach, thought twice, and either froze or retracted. Don’t.

When faced with that moment, a knot heavy in your stomach and fear niggling at your conscience, allow your spirit to tighten your gut, strengthen your perseverance, and push you out of your comfort zone. It will be frightening, but on the other side of that, overshadowing that feeling and coming before acceptance or refusal can dare attempt materialization, is sheer exhilaration.

Because you did it, and that is significant.

Freedom from the bonds of your own mental trappings sends energy through your body, and you may face rejection or failure, but you’ve done the deed and now live in new territory. There is no going back. Secure your footing atop this burgeoning podium and allow what you’ve put into action swirl around you, pieces falling into new places of opportunity that did not exist until you created it.

You are amazing, so, go do it!



Image by Francesco Gallarotti