I wrote this post a couple of years ago after having a startling experience. I never shared the post at the time. It seems particularly relevant now in the wake of my poetry book recently being accepted by a publisher. I hope it inspires you.
“You have been criticizing yourself for years, and it hasn’t worked. Try approving of yourself and see what happens.”– Louise L. Hay
I had a breaking open the other day, beautiful, startling and deep.
For months I have been sending a manuscript of my poems out to presses to find its rightful publisher. Suddenly, I saw how much I was expecting not to find a publisher, assuming that no one could possibly want it.
This is despite the fact that I have had many poems published in journals, been invited to read at literary events for years, received heartfelt appreciation from enthusiastic audiences and even encouragement about this particular manuscript from noted editors.
I see how often I have unconsciously expected to be rejected, shut out, not wanted or just not understood.
It is an old pattern. I anticipate that others will not want what I have to give. And so I sometimes attract those very results I fear.
But here is what came to me suddenly, not just as an idea, but as a deep wonder and inspiration.
Changing the View
What if the whole world is my friend and I behaved as such?
What if I went through my day as if I knew in my bones that I was loved by all of life.
Not in a full-of-myself way, but beautifully empty. Having “no-self,” the way a tree does or a sky. Open, generous, received and receiving.
What if I cultivated a deeper relatedness, a calm sureness and bountiful love for self?
What if I let my star rise, my flower open, unperturbed? What if I let myself be fully loved and embraced? What if I believed in the value of all I am doing?
Letting in Love
If my voice is actually needed here, if I am given these words for a reason, if I am given my love of music for a reason, how do I embody this knowing?
For years I held myself outside the sanctuary of a deeper love, not love from another person, but LOVE itself. And because of that, I have been fearful of so much, constructing imagined catastrophes, feeling I have to do it all by myself.
Golden sun bathes the treetops. We wait for love, while the whole day paints itself lavishly before us. Now I am peering through the curtain, beginning to see something that rends me open.
What if I could allow myself all this grace?
How Might Your Life Change?
How might your life be different if you knew in your bones that you are loved, wanted, accepted and needed by Life?
If you behaved as if you knew this?
- How would you move differently in the world?
- What would you do that you have not been doing?
- How might you be different in your relationships, your creativity, your work, your finances, your play?
Write in your journal, allowing yourself to explore this. Then…
Practice Living As If
Try it on today, even if you are not sure it is true. Commit to acting as if it is true.
See what miracles arise, what synchronicities come to bless you, what revelations present themselves.
See how you feel differently in your heart, how your posture and movement change, what new choices you make. How you become a blessing to others as you stop worrying whether you yourself are loved.
Behave as if you are the beloved of all of Life.
You can play with “what if” statements in your journal and in your thoughts to open yourself to new possibilities.
We often use “what if” in a fearful way, imagining the worst, as in “what if I fail?” Try using “what if” to bring you into expansiveness, wonderful new ways of being, openness to blessings. “What if I knew I was wanted and needed here, loved, a blessing and blessed?”
Try taking this on right now inside yourself and share what comes up for you. How does it feel in your body, your heart, your mind, your spirit?