Despite the risk of looking like a lunatic to the internet (not that I mind), I have a confession to make.
I talk to myself… a lot and out loud when I’m running or hiking alone. I’m not sure if I’m talking to myself or the Divine, but it’s probably a bit of both. Sometimes I repeat positive self talk or mantras:
“I can do hard things”
“I’m getting stronger”
“One breath, one step at a time”
Or I talk about the experiences I would like to create in my life. There’s something about saying it out loud that truly seals the deal. Say it. Say it out loud again and again. Say it with conviction and before you know it, you’ll be living it.
First, this trail is SO beautiful. It’s straight out of woodland fairy tale. One of the best things about running in the forest is taking in deep, delicious, pine-scented breaths of fresh air. Nature is where you go to plug into vitality.
As I made my way along the lake shore, deep into the forest, pushing past rushing streams, waterfalls and rocky terrain, I found myself saying, “Thank you for my hardships. All of them. I know I couldn’t see it while I was in the midst of past, painful moments, but I knew I’d reach a point where I would look back with gratitude and say thank you. Thank you for taking me where I need to go and never leaving me where I was.”
… and then I cried, because there’s no better feeling than the revelation of truth. Holding faith in the knowledge that yeah, life can have it’s challenges, but when you are committed to being happy, loving and truthful, you can (and will) make it through anything. ANYTHING.
This is why I treasure running and pushing my physical and mental limits. It has taught me that I’m responsible for generating my own power, thoughts, beliefs and attitudes. Because I’m bound to my own life experience – and ONLY my experience, it doesn’t matter what other people are doing or thinking. I don’t rely on anyone to make me happy or fulfilled. Instead, I am just happy and fulfilled.
The only thing we ever have control over is ourselves. So, when people say that we shouldn’t be selfish, it doesn’t sit right with me.
If we don’t practice self care, set healthy boundaries, speak up for ourselves and declare what we desire, then what do we have to offer the world? Or anyone? Not much…
If we can’t show up for ourselves, how can we expect to show up fully for other people? It doesn’t mean that we have to “be perfect” or a completed product before we’re ready to create a new beginning. It’s the opposite, actually. It begins with the willingness to live fully and whole-heartedly, despite the unknown. It’s looking at life and declaring, “I’m all in!”
Living this way is filled with so many gifts. Although it requires 100% participation and dedication from ourselves and sometimes forging our own path, it doesn’t mean we are destined to a life of solitude and loneliness. Sometimes, people will leave our lives, or we’ll want to leave theirs. At first, it can be sad (and scary!), but it’s necessary in order for better-suited companions to show up. Individuals will seemingly ‘appear’ out of the blue who want to meet us halfway on the bridge and walk with us, instead of away from us. The kind of people who will enhance our lives, support and accept us, 100%.
When we focus on our obligation to own our authenticity, and being “the type of person” we’d like to meet, we will meet our tribe, our twin soul, soul mate or great love. It is a universal law and guarantee: like attracts like. What we seek is also seeking us.
My hardships have taught me all of this and I am better because of it. How can I not be grateful for them?