Where Do you want to Dwell this year?
I had a college friend tell me once that when she walked out her door she made sure her bra and undies matched. She worried that if ever she was in an accident and they had to undress her— if she didn’t have matching underclothes on— it would be a complete disaster. Jamie believed that the people that might need to try and save her life one day, should such a tragedy occur, would laugh about her choice of panties! Really? Of course this sounds ludicrous. But, The other day I began to wonder if I've ever had some equally obnoxious ideas that stressed me out when I walked out of my front door. And, yup, I did/do. Here it is: I worry that when I die THEY WILL KNOW MY TRUTH—Everyone will find out how messy and disorganized my house is! I realized that I’ve had this thought on constant repeat for as many years as I can remember. Even though I am perfectly aware that I would be gone so there would be no opportunity for shame— at the end of the day— I will mentally twitch a bit when I think about the state of my bedroom and office.
I have, in the past, allowed this deep fear of mine, to paralyze me. I have canceled parties at my home when I became overwhelmed by anxiety. I have built up stories in my head about what other people would think about me should they see certain aspects of my home. These fears doubled, and even tripled as my family had to deal with some financial losses over the years. We haven’t finished fixing up our home yet, and we’ve had to live without a lot of bells and whistles, let alone a working closet in the master bedroom!
The day came that I realized—hey this is your life, and it is what it is. I (we) can’t hide forever. We have to live through this struggle—out loud. I realized I had a choice of what I wanted to ‘dwell' on— and that my dwelling was a sacred place no matter the condition. It is where we live literally and figuratively.
From that mind shift, I began a practice, quietly, and with lots of patience towards myself, of allowing people into my home. I stopped apologizing (well, not as much anyway) for the lack of this and that and for the unfolded laundry in the living room. Then I went all the way by having some dear friends over for a fondue party— and it felt so good. Everyone enjoyed themselves and no one seemed to mind the unfinished entryway or that I have mix-matched dining room chairs. My fears subsided, and I realized I had a choice every time some rubbish thoughts came up for me. I had a choice about where I wanted to dwell and what I wanted to dwell on. I am not living in denial; I am simply changing the focus point.
In 2016, I want to continue to keep this mind-shift; this freedom of being and becoming. I want to dwell in peace and possibility regardless of the negatives of my life.
With all the hype of making resolutions and big changes this month and looking towards all the possibilities in this New year, I would ask you a few simple questions as you are preparing your list of sacred intentions.
· What obnoxious, stressful thoughts suck the joy out of your life? Who would you be without them?
· What is the one thing you really want to bring into your life this year?
· Where do you want to dwell?