How to Be Bigger Than You Are

I want to see if you are interested in being bigger than you are at present. Are you game?

Maybe you want to know what I’m really asking before you commit. Okay, fair enough.

I’m wondering if you’d like to challenge yourself with a new experience. It might be something on the wild side or simply different from what you are used to.

Here’s one example of a choice I made.

Recently I was offered an opportunity to write a haiku and submit it to a contest site. In the event you’re unfamiliar with what a haiku is, it’s a very short poem with a specific structure. It takes the form of three lines, the first and third lines are five syllables and the second (middle line) is seven syllables. It is a style created in Japan and has a fabled history dating back to at least the sixteenth century.

I could have ignored the prompt to create using this unique style but something about it grabbed me. The contest was very specific that you must use the word ‘blue’ somewhere in the haiku.

The very first image that formed in my head was the brilliant blue ice of a glacier my wife and I saw while in Alaska. Simply gorgeous!

Conforming to the 5/7/5 syllable format presented quite a problem for me. It limited my freedom and I think that’s a big part of any new challenge. Stepping outside of your comfort zone is always difficult, but if you never do, you’ll never know what you are truly capable of.

So, I spent time creating and recreating. Finally, something came together, and I liked how it felt. The image really stood out for me and gave me a sense of inner satisfaction, which was the whole point to me. Although it would be fun to ‘win’ the contest, I’ve already experienced enough value and enjoyment that it doesn’t really matter if I do.

In case you’d like to read the haiku, here it is.

shafts of midnight blue

silhouetting moon lit ice

dreaming of heaven

I’m not suggesting that this is a way for YOU to be ‘bigger’, just that it was one way I chose.

Are there ways that occur to you? Things you’ve always wanted to try but never got around to?

Do you know what’s stopping you? Can you imagine it being fun to try something brand new and see where it leads you?

Obviously, safety plays a part in this adventure. My wife has exempted me from skydiving, hang gliding, even rollerblading, but that’s not really very limiting. And I can think of lots of ways to explore the world.

I don’t want to stay the same size that I am right now. I want to be bigger and to expand, learn new things, meet new people, experience new journeys. How about you?

I’d like to encourage you to follow your dreams. You can start small and work your way up if that feels more comfortable to you.

The idea here is to release a bit of the rope that keeps you tethered close to the ground. If it feels right to you, let go a bit and explore. There are literally thousands of ideas out there in the world, many of which require no money, travel, or a dependence on others to try. They only require your willingness and excitement and participation.

I end with this hopefully encouraging haiku:

it is up to you

to explore your dreams or not

i suggest you do

Allowing

What do you allow into your life?

This word may mean several different things to you since ‘allow’ is an open word. Allow, as in, let happen. Or allow, as in, give your permission to. Allow could mean to authorize or admit or even, to accept and believe in.

And depending on which meaning you choose; it alters the way your life proceeds.

When I considered this topic, one of my first thoughts is how the things I allow into my life might not work in my favor. They might not go right or to a place I am comfortable.

Why would I think this?

It could just as easily be the opposite, that things I allow into my life will benefit me and even bring me happiness.

My simple answer is that I have a default setting that points toward imagining that things I allow into my life will create challenges for me or work against me, instead of for me.

Where did this concept come from?

The first thing that occurs to me is that I learned it from someone. That it was a part of my cultural training. And although this may be entirely true, it doesn’t help me. In fact, it can become another part of the problem because it may trap me into thinking there is someone else to blame or that I am a victim. Neither of these things work for my greater good.

I certainly recognize how unfortunate a default this is for me, and I have tried to reprogram myself. I’ve tried to let go of what my cultural training has taught me and shifted toward a smarter, more beneficial approach.

When I encounter something new, I envision the positive outcomes it could bring into my life and then consciously allow them into my world.

I train my inner being to recognize the lies I tell myself, that allowing things into my life is dangerous. It’s only dangerous if that is what I believe.

It takes constant reminding to live with the truth that all things can work to my benefit, even and sometimes especially, the ones that at first appear challenging or difficult.

As with so many other things in my life, I feel I need an example to help me shift my consciousness. I want to see how the whole idea of ‘allowing’ will open my world and bring me joy.

So, I sit back and allow myself to breathe into a state of relaxation and see what comes to fill the open space.

An awesome thought pops in.

Allowing opens a door. As I keep breathing, the door swings wider. I begin to feel the presence of possibilities. I have no conscious opinion about whether they are positive or negative and am at peace believing they are just open possibilities, available to me to experience, if I choose to allow them in.

I sense the presence of faith and trust, which feel like very necessary ingredients in the process, because without them, it feels as if nothing will happen.

A part of me wonders, faith and trust in who, in what?

But I know the answer to that. Faith and trust in me and in my inner divine nature.

The more I breathe, the deeper the resonance with knowing that what I choose to allow, will serve me. There is a knowingness and I sense that this same essence exists in everyone. We are all divine, and we all have a choice what to allow in.

Plotting Your Course

Do you know where you are headed in life? Are you going in a direction with intention or are you going with the flow, allowing life to guide your steps?

This question got me to thinking about how folks have navigated their lives over the course of time, especially the ancient seagoers.

For me, the thought of getting in a boat, leaving shore, and heading out beyond sight of land creates a good deal of concern. I suppose if I could sail along the edge of land, I’d be okay, but crossing an ocean by myself, no way.

I wondered how the early seafarers managed to arrive at their destinations, especially if they were going somewhere no one had ever been before.

I did a little research and discovered that they used the sun and the North Star (Polaris) to help guide them. Always knowing where north was became extremely important to them as a reference point. While the sun was up, they could easily track their east/west route and at noon they carefully watched the shadows the sun cast. They also became familiar with the constellations in the night sky as navigational aids. There was even a reference to watching the flight paths of birds and the direction the fish were swimming to help set their course.

What does all of this have to do with us?

Well, one thing it suggests to me is, what do we use as our aids to navigate our lives?

No doubt there are many ways for us to move through our lives and I’m wondering if I asked you, could you tell me how you do it?

Do you have a set of intentions, a kind of road map for what you desire to experience in your life? It strikes me that without intentions, it is very difficult to arrive where we say we want to go, for if we don’t have any set points we often drift an aimless path.

I’m not saying there aren’t times when it’s nice to kick back and relax, but it seems to me that most folks want to experience certain things in their lives and without knowing what they are, it is much more challenging to have them.

One thing that may help is to have some mid-points between your starting and end points. Sort of mini goals that keep you on track. Often it is easier to make advancements when your goal is nearer and seems more practical. Breaking down the process can be especially helpful when you start to veer off course from a mid-point because you can bring yourself back and not stress over how far afield you are from your end point.

What other navigational aids are there in reaching our intentions?

Perhaps you have many you use, and I hope they always help you reach all of your dreams. However, if you could use a few suggestions, here are the ones that come to me.

Although I’m not usually good at this, it has been one of the most important pathways to succeeding in my life…ask for help. None of us know everything, so it’s important to have your own North Stars in your life, folks who want to help you. And once you’ve asked for help, accept it when it’s offered to you. Learn from what’s given to you. It may not be the precise way for you, but it may spark something in you that does create a path forward.

I also believe we are all gifted. We came here with an idea in mind of what we’d like to experience while here. Each of us has an inner knowing. So, believe in yourself and then surround yourself with others who believe in you and who share your dreams. They can be cheerleaders helping you reach all of your mid-points and all of your end points.

Retreat

Have you ever gone on a retreat? It doesn’t have to have been for a specified amount of time, just long enough for you to feel separated from your normal existence. A pause, a time out, just for you.

If you haven’t, I’d like to invite you to give it a try.

I know, it can feel like there are a million reasons why you can’t do it. Not enough time, money, family coverage and I’m sure every reason is legitimate.

But what if you could spare an hour, an afternoon, or a day, and if you’re very fortunate, even more time? How might you benefit?

Okay, maybe it can’t be a block of time. Imagine if you were to be  able to separate out a half hour every day, where it was ‘your time’, able to be spent in ways that rejuvenated you or where you could map out some new and exciting directions?

This is certainly something I wished I’d paid more attention to earlier in my life. I can see now how beneficial it would have been to have had a few dedicated hours of ‘me time’.

Of course, if you’re in partnership with another or part of a family group, it’s important to make sure you’re also supporting others needs for the same thing. This mutual caring is part of a loving relationship and at the core of holding good intentions for others growth.

Maybe it would help you decide to give this a try if you knew some of the benefits, so I’d like to share some of those that have come my way.

For several years I’ve made it a point to block out time for a retreat. Often, it’s part of a formal program, but within the program there are many hours each person has to themselves. Time which can be used in whatever way brings them fulfillment.

Recently I attended a workshop (retreat) and discovered a variety of ways to enrich my life.

At the beginning I encouraged myself to be open to connecting with others, to letting them in, so that we could form friendships. This isn’t always easy for me because I have to overcome my own past history, where as a child, I went to summer camp and found it challenging to make new friends. But I recognize that releasing my fears clears the way for all that others will bring into my life and for what I might be able to offer them.

In addition to having some trouble making new friends, my childhood history includes bouts of loneliness and that comes to sit with me every time I go on a retreat. Knowing this, I try to find the courage to accept the feelings when they arrive, to let them have their say and then to move past them by taking the first step in connecting with others. I’ve discovered that taking some form of action often allows me to move through most any ‘pain’ I encounter.

During each retreat I consciously choose to explore new opportunities, try new foods, create art, write poetry, probe new thoughts, and spend time giving of myself to others, and if given to, I try to accept their gifts with grace.

Most of all, I attempt to speak my truth, to say what feels important to be shared, to support others growth and to affirm everyone’s value.

Of course, this type of group retreat provides the opportunity for connection and interaction with others. But I also do retreats by myself, and this creates different and beautiful experiences as well. So, no matter what you choose, whether you are with others or all by yourself, there are wonderful experiences awaiting you.

Early on I discovered there was only one way to truly find out if a retreat would be worth it. I had to go on one.

I hope there is some time in your busy life where there is a retreat waiting you.

Speaking Your Truth

If someone asked you what speaking your truth means to you, what would you say?

Some might say that it means being honest with others about how you feel and what you think. Or it could mean expressing yourself in a way that mirrors your inner thoughts and ideas clearly, so that another understands your position about something.

It might also mean taking a stand about something truly important to you. And maybe even more critically, taking action to ensure others know how dedicated you are to whatever cause or concern you support.

When I was thinking about what I consider to be my answer, I reflected on a number of obstacles that get in my way making it difficult to speak my truth. Perhaps you’ve encountered some of them as well.

In my ordinary day to day life, it is often challenging to separate out what is most important to me from the host of tasks I feel I need to complete on any given day. Some of the mundane chores seem to take up so much time that it feels like I run out of time. I’m sure this is not really the case, but it feels like it to me and I recognize my perceptions rule my life.

Another, and very different issue, is that I can initially become quite concerned about what others think about what I say (speaking my truth) and either disagree with me or disregard me. I realize I have no control over their reactions, nor do I really want any, and that it is wise to release any vested interest in their opinions, but a human part of me is tempted anyway.

An additional obstacle is that I don’t always fully know what my truth is. I may have picked up on hints or formed parts of what feels like the truth to me, but it’s not always completely formed or not clear enough for me to see it or speak it.

Courage is yet another challenge in speaking my truth. I suspect I am not the only one who fears not being accepted by others, even while knowing I’ll probably never have enough insight to truly know what they think or feel.

Beyond that, speaking my truth is ultimately not about being accepted by others, having them agree with my views or supporting me in any tangible ways.

Speaking my truth (or you speaking yours) is about exploring and discovering what lies inside you, in your heart and in your spirit. And once revealed, allowing it to grow and flourish, so that it can be shared with the world.

And believe me, it’s there for that very purpose.

I feel strongly that each of us has within us parts of the whole. We share a connection to the one, the divine, where everything is known. Speaking our truth out loud encourages those around us to do the same. We all learn from each other. We all can invite each other into our inner worlds and thrive together.

At one point in my life, a few years ago, I made a conscious decision to speak my truth, both inside and outside of me.

Inside of me, I chose to spend solitary time talking with (god), as I’ve mentioned several times in these posts and to journal and meditate and walk, contemplating what I believe or know to be true for me.

Springing from this deep source, I’ve come to the conclusion that what is important to me to be shared is what I feel the truth is about life. To speak out loud so that others may hear my words, not to convince or sway, but to invite them to consider if there is any value for them in what I choose to say.

Speaking my truth then becomes a witness of what I perceive about the nature of things, in an effort to share my depth with other’s depth, and in that sharing we all become a part of the one.

Take Another Look

I’ve discovered that I’m prone to keeping my first impressions and often don’t take another look. Does this ever happen to you?

If you can’t see the banner picture I chose for this post, it’s a pretty famous one. It’s known by different names, and it features what is either a beautiful woman with her face tilted away from you or an old woman with a large hat on her head.

Folks looking at it usually see one image or the other, but not both. And even when told there is another image, they find it very difficult to shake the first one out of their head, in order to see the other.

This has certainly been the case for me with optical illusions, despite knowing ahead of time there is a trick to seeing one or more images, I can’t do it right away.

The same goes for trying to find Waldo in the famous illustrated pictures of ‘Where’s Waldo’, where there are literally hundreds of figures in a picture and you’re trying to find Waldo in his stripped outfit and glasses. Even using a grid search, it’s difficult.

Well, both of these cases made me wonder about whether I would benefit from taking a closer look at my life.

Are there things I miss because I don’t look carefully enough or make up my mind too soon? What would happen if I allowed myself to form a first impression, but recognized it might not be the best impression? And maybe if I took another look, there could be something pretty special waiting for me.

I think to myself, where would I start? If it were up to you, what would you choose?

What I decided was to sit back, relax and see what came to me in the empty space. This is what filled in the gaps.

People in my life.

Is there a deeper story below the surface I don’t see because I’ve already made up my mind? Why have I accepted my formed impressions and could there be more to it?  Perhaps if I watched their actions, as well as listened to the words they speak, I might learn a great deal more about them.

Folks in the news.

Maybe they are not who they ‘appear’ to be and that there is another side to their stories. Would I want folks assuming they knew about me based solely on what others say? I don’t think so.

Events that happen to me.

I wonder about all of my physical issues. Do they hint at something I ought to be paying more attention to, especially if they stay with me or become more intense?

And what about any emotional issues? Are there hidden, deeper messages for me, something far more important than what first appeared to me?

What about any financial issues? Even though I’ve spent time thinking about things, is it possible my initial plans may not hold up? Would it benefit me to do the math one more time and check to see if my assumptions are truly valid?

Then there are spiritual matters. Is what I think I know true or is there something of more value waiting for me to uncover it, something beneath the surface?

Well, for me, part of the value of writing these posts is to explore thoughts and ideas to see if there are treasures that want to come to my attention.

So, instead of stopping at my first impression, I think I’ll pause from time to time and take another look. Maybe you’d like to join me, and we can both have some fun and learn something new.

A Visit From Sadness

How often would you say you feel sad?

I know that there are specific times and events where sadness can be quite intense, but I’m asking about the smaller versions, the ones where we seem to fall into a state of temporary sadness.

As humans, I believe we all realize our lives are going to be made up of many different feelings, some we welcome and others we hope will never arrive.

Recently I had an encounter with sadness. There was a faint sense of it and then wham, sadness seemed to ooze in from every direction.

I was away from home and although I was in a place of my own choosing, I still had an overwhelming sense of sadness overtake me. And it reminded me of other times when sadness came to me and was accompanied by its friend, loneliness.

My first reaction, as it usually is, was to try to push it away, hoping that by sheer force of will, it would move on. I was afraid of feeling it and unsure how deep it would travel inside of me. After all, why would I want to feel sad? Why would I want to get dragged down, unsure of when the sadness would let go?

Something about how I felt was different though. At first, I couldn’t put my finger on it. I tried and all I could come up with was that it felt ‘lighter’.

As I’ve mentioned in prior posts, I’ve spent a great deal of time exploring my feelings. Part of that process is focused on allowing them in and being open to what they have to share with me. That may sound a little unusual, but it’s something that has been very helpful for me.

So, when this sadness arrived, I coached myself not to panic, but rather to stay open to it, and in the opening, to see if I could listen to what the sadness might share with me.

I softened my normally apprehensive self and leaned into it, allowing the sadness to enter me. What I discovered was that it didn’t really want to stay long. It just wanted to let me know it’s okay to spend time together every once in a while. And, after a short time, it stood up and waved goodbye and wished me a good day.

This whole exchange fascinated me. Here I was worried that sadness had decided to move in permanently and all it really wanted to do was come for a quick visit.

Sadness, like every other feeling, comes and goes.

What occurred to me later was that I am the one largely responsible for its length of stay. Every time I resist it or try futilely to push it away, it gains a certain amount of strength so that when it finally does arrive, its’ power is far greater.

It also occurred to me that many other feelings follow this same curve. They arrive asking for me to pay attention to see if there is a useful message attached.

In this case, sadness came and went, a fleeting feeling. It opened me up and I realized I would survive its stay. I would move on and after a bit, be happy again. I think it’s this way with all of our emotions and feelings. They don’t have to be permanent. They can just be visitors, filling past, on their way to somewhere else.

It’s up to each of us to decide how long we wish to keep them.

So, I decided to wave back as sadness left me and accept its offer to have a good day.

Everything Serves You Directly (OR)

Would you agree that claiming that ‘everything in your life serves you’ is a pretty bold statement?

It certainly feels that way to me and if you read my last post, you’ll recall that this is exactly what Lia (a loving voice of god) told me.

I thought, there has to be a catch, some loophole or fine print, after all, don’t each of us experience dozens of things that would defy this idea? I could easily come up with many from my life and from observing the lives of others.

Just to name a few there are wars, diseases, oppression, famine, natural disasters and then there are additional challenges that may affect us more personally, like a car accident, the loss of a loved one, having our job eliminated, a house fire, or being homeless. The list seems practically endless.

I wondered what Lia could possibly mean and approached her, asking for an explanation. To be honest, the way I phrased my question felt more like a demand, then a request to me, but she didn’t seem to mind in the least. I felt her love cover me over and sat back, now prepared to hear what she had to say to me.

Lia spoke these words, “It’s important to choose the right frame of reference in order for this idea to make sense to you. The first thing that would help you recognize the truth, is that everything serves you either directly or indirectly.”

Examples always help me, so I asked Lia to explain something that happened to me last week, where my car suddenly overheated, forcing me to pull off the road. How did that ‘serve me’? She responded with a question of her own, “What happened next?”

“Well,” I said, “I pulled into a Hoffman’s Car Wash/Quick Lube station and a man came out to see what I needed. He consulted with me and offered a few helpful suggestions. I spoke to a very nice woman at AAA who set me up for a tow. The tow-truck driver, who was also extremely helpful, came by and brought both my car and me to my Service garage. I was told that since they were really jammed up, it might take 1 ½-2 weeks before they could fix it.

Shockingly, I was calm throughout this whole sequence of events, even realizing the delay in fixing it would greatly complicate my life. As it turns out, my mechanic was able to fit me in the next day, due to a cancelation in his schedule.

Lia listened attentively, then asked a follow-up question, “So, how have you been served by this incident?”

I thought for a moment before responding with this, “There were at least four different individuals who offered to help me (five counting my wife who picked me up, and when my car was fixed, dropped me off). I never felt alone or helpless. And I allowed myself to go with the flow, rather than get upset, scream at my car, and become angry at the cost of the repairs, which (sad to say) would have been my normal reaction.”

I could sense Lia smiling at me.

“Okay,” I said, “I get how there are some direct ways I was served, because I believe I’ll carry a more positive attitude into my next challenging situation and I recognized how grateful I am for the presence of other wonderfully helpful people in my life, which makes me want to be one of them for someone else.”

I hesitated and asked, “But what about the indirect ways you mentioned?” I admit I find it baffling some days to make any sense of the ‘big’ things. Maybe you do too.

“It requires a shift on your part, a change of reference points. You are accustomed to thinking in terms of good and bad, labels you use based on your cultural perceptions. This forces you into seeing only the ‘small picture’ and limits your ability to see the ‘big picture’. To fully understand the ‘big picture’, you need to shift from your earthly perspective to a heavenly perspective.”

“Wait, what?” Obviously, we have more to talk about because I want to understand how my life works. Clearly Lia is interested in answering my questions, but it’s going to take more time. So, if you’d like to know more, please stay with me and read my next post.

Patterns

Are there any recognizable patterns in your life or is everything a mystery? Do you ever wonder if there is a rhyme or a reason to what happens in your life?

Sometimes I wonder if readers ever see the pictures that precede my posts. I try to carefully select them to either give a clue about the meaning or provide a spark of interest in what might be coming.

In case you can’t see the picture for this post, it’s a nautilus shell, which has a repeating interior pattern that becomes more intricate the closer it gets to the center. It’s a fascinating shape and one of many repeating designs in the natural world.

According to one website I found there are four distinct repeating patterns: symmetries, fractals, spirals, and Voronoi. Each are unique and represent different ways of developing according to a plan.

Symmetries are organized around the principle of identical halves, like the feathers of a peacock or the wings of a butterfly or dragonfly. Fractals are detailed patterns that look similar at any scale and repeat themselves over time, such as snowflakes, tree branching, and ferns. Spirals occur in curved patterns on a center point and then form a series of circular shapes revolving around the center point, for example, pinecones, pineapples, and hurricanes. Voronoi patterns provide clues to nature’s tendency to favor efficiency. They form from a seed point and extend outward like the skin of giraffes, corn on the cob, honeycombs, and leaf cells.

Okay, so why the science lesson and what possible difference can this make in my life or yours? Do you see any clues that could shed some light on this?

I admit I am fascinated by how nature evolves and the patterns that occur, so it seemed a logical step to me to wonder whether our lives develop according to any sort of natural patterns, and if so, what could they be?

It turns out scientists have studied this quite a bit. They believe that humans recognize patterns as a way of allowing us to predict and expect what is coming. The process involves matching the information we receive with the information already stored in our brains. The idea is that we benefit from remembering and being able to use patterns to help us navigate our lives.

So, I began to wonder what patterns I see that aid me and what additional possible patterns would make my life better.

My first thought was recognizing how easy it is to fall into non-productive patterns. To think the exact same thing about someone or something, merely because I’ve experienced it with someone else. I’d call this my ‘assumption pattern’, expecting the same outcome without any valid reason.

The next thought to arrive was how easily I gravitate toward putting things in separate buckets in my mind, or to give it a name, my ‘labeling pattern’. Oh, that person arrived late, they go in the ‘can’t get anywhere on time bucket’, I wonder why?

As I got started, it became easier and easier to discover the host of patterns I have, most of which are not beneficial to me, except to recognize I need to take another look and make some changes as to how I see things.

Each of the patterns I came across exist for my convenience, so I don’t have to think about and decide what to do with all the new experiences I encounter. Choices are made quickly to place things in categories and then I’m done.

One of the beautiful things about seeing so many different patterns in nature is that they serve as a reminder to me to make conscious choices about my own human patterns. To take myself off autopilot and look more carefully at what goes on in my life.

It takes some effort, but it is well worth my time and energy.

Choosing Your Ingredients

A funny question came to mind recently.

But first, a little background information.

In 1973, in an effort to standardize the food industry, the United States began requiring that packaged foods provide nutritional labels spelling out the number of calories, grams of protein, carbohydrate and fat and the percent of the US Recommended Daily Allowance of specific ingredients.

Then in 1990, the USDA mandated that all food companies were required to make consistent claims and include a detailed, standardized nutrition facts panel on all products intended to be sold.

This resulted in the nutritional labels you now find on almost every food item sold and additional changes are planned for the future.

My question is, what do you think it would be like if every human had a label attached to them listing their ingredients, like the food products we eat?

I’m not talking about the percentages of the most common chemicals found in humans; like oxygen, hydrogen, nitrogen, carbon, calcium, and phosphorus.

What I mean is, what if we came with a label identifying the contents of our hearts and minds? A label that provided insight into our feelings, thoughts, and beliefs.

In one way it might make it easier to understand each other.

And perhaps there would be warnings on our labels, letting others know which topics were most likely to trigger negative reactions before conversations began.

The idea also made me wonder, if we could see our own label clearly, would we still want each ingredient to be inside us? Or perhaps we’d recognize that one or more of them do not make us happy, fulfilled, or joyful. That some of our contents create misery and suffering.

If we knew in advance that some of our ingredients were harmful to us, we might make better decisions.

Well, what if we started over? Is that possible?

If you answered ‘yes’, what would you consciously choose to place inside yourself, if you could begin again?

I found the question intriguing and needed to sit back for a moment before answering.

I tried to clear my mind, which is quite a task some days. I think there are lots of ingredients that would be good to start with, but I ended up choosing ‘love’. Love for me and love for those around me. Is there any way that could ever go wrong?

But an important part of me asked what that actually means. How does love work? After all, there are so many difficult and challenging situations we all face. Is love really the answer to them all?

I sat back again, awaiting my own answer.

I came to an immediate conclusion…yes, love is the answer to everything. It is the main ingredient. With it firmly in my heart I see everything else fitting together. Love allows me freedom. It makes it possible to see through fear, sadness, anger, and all of the other warnings I might encounter.

And if I want to add other ingredients, love works with them all in unison, courage, compassion, bravery, generosity, empathy, faith, trust and so many more.

If you decide to start over, I hope you choose ingredients that serve you well.