Life on the edge is about trust, resilience and courage — it is the space where we evolve and become our best selves
So, what if you don’t have it all buttoned up and together…do you really think anyone else does? Welcome to the human experience, truly.
Yes, when the pieces of my life feel like they are in place…I feel in place. Routine (sprinkled with a bit of tidiness) is a salve that keeps me calm…to a certain extent. However, I can’t straighten-my-junk-drawers-away my problems, try as I may. And sometimes our self-imposed order is simply pacifying the great explorer within you who is chomping at the bit to bust a move — to embrace life on the edge of your comfort zone. Because comfort zones are overrated and it is on the edge where your magic emerges, where you dare to hear the stirrings from within.
And as a side dish, Best Selfer, Dr. Christiane Northrup says, “The edge between pleasure and a little discomfort is where change happens.”
Let’s not sugarcoat that. I know, just the sound of that is enough to make one go back to the above-mentioned drawer-cleaning, or whatever flavor that shows up for you. Yet, that is exactly how we end up with life on the perpetual spin cycle. We walk around telling each other we are ‘fine’. That’s how we dull ourselves down, suppress that which desires to come forth and it is how we begin to forget who we are.
But have no fear, your soul never abandons you. S/he will whisper, try to get your attention, point out ‘coincidences’, alert you…and ultimately, have a temper tantrum in order to get your attention.
Best to avoid that strategy when possible, trust me.
A recent hike up a mountain with a dear friend that was filled with soulful conversation reminded me how we all need connection, quiet, Mother Nature and some big ol’ space for uncertainty. In other words, some life on the edge.
Are you ready to take a walk on the wild side…to sit where you have no answers?
We don’t live in a world that fosters this message. Uncertainty? Why in the world would one want to embrace uncertainty? The messaging our society provides is that we are to get over and move through things as quickly as possible. There’s a pill for everything, a remedy to refrain from feeling, a lotion, potion or affirmation to wash it all away. No slacking. Of course we want to heal and feel better, so we dutifully get in line. We try to muscle our way through navigating from point A to point B instead of experiencing and observing as we find our ways.
Oh, and btw, did I mention that this is a life-long journey? Keep that in mind the next time you are shaming yourself. The uncertainty is just new, undiscovered territory.
What if instead of beating yourself up, you recognized that you have graduated to the next level of your personal evolution?
We’re all searching for something. We may disguise it as things like the desire for better health, more abundance, a love relationship, meaningful work and passion, etc. But these are actually symptoms of a deeper internal desire, a quest for the courage and strength to unleash something within that we innately know is there, but we are unsure of how to access — our best selves. This is your soul calling — the true adventure of your life. (And I stress the word ‘life’ — as in an ongoing adventure).
This deeply soulful part exists within each of us…crying out for our attention, nurturing, unleashing.
Our true job is to discover ways back to it, to not get tripped up on lacking the roadmap. That’s the big stumbling block, the soul conundrum. We’re so accustomed to being able to plug a destination into our GPS systems that provides detailed step-by-step instructions on which turn to take next — that we’ve lost sense of our internal compass. We’ve become afraid of trusting in ourselves.
That’s what the big life search is all about.
That’s why we remain unsettled, unresolved, unhealed. We take 2 steps forward and stagnate. A new self-help book, new protocol, new theory or new inspiration can feel like a hit that will sufficiently placate us for a moment. But then, without follow-through and integration, we forget where we were going because life is ‘good enough’…that is until life comes knocking to remind us, Oh, I’ve still got some work to do.
I don’t mean to refer to life as a chore, an endless to-do list — but it can always be deeper, more soulful, connected and juicier on a spiritual plane. This isn’t about any of the sparkly life trappings or even the people. I think it starts with identifying pain points and in turn finding ways to nurture them rather than run. And we can enjoy the ride in between.
This reminds me of a recent moment where I was sitting on the edge of a cliff in Ireland. I can still smell the sea air and sense the awesomeness of the open sky before me. Not a cloud in the sky, not a boat to be seen, no distinguishable horizon…just the expansiveness of an open space, an open space of uncertainty. It also represented the endless possibility before each of us.
I’ve had a rough month emotionally. It has made me squirm in my vulnerability, feel sorry for myself and even angry. I haven’t been able to meditate, stomp my feet or cry my way out of it. My old tricks have failed me. No amount of busyness or productivity has assuaged this (which really frustrated me). I’ve only been able to surrender to it.
I share this because I know I’m not alone. I share this because I don’t have a patent on feelings. I share this because in sharing, you may find a piece of your story and a nugget that will help you navigate your own story.
Most of all, I share this because you are YOU, a fellow journeyer, a Best Selfer trying to feel your way in a world that tells you not to.
I’m desperately trying to practice what I preach, to refrain from resisting and to slip into observation mode. I’m calling on all of my internal wisdom and practice. And though none of it is eradicating my discomfort, it is creating the space for discoveries to come forth. They are simple messages, so simple in fact that they are easy to miss. And yet, they are profound. Though it’s not moving as quickly as I’d like, this is what I’d like to share:
- As comforting as any routine may feel, routine is meant to be broken. I keep getting knocked off my routine, but finally realized that perhaps that’s the message in itself: Time for a new routine?
- Create space to feel and heal, refrain from putting any timeline on it.
- Don’t be afraid of not knowing what comes next. One step in a new direction unveils a new path.
- Trust your beautiful self. One of my favorite quotes by Glennon Doyle is, “Stop asking others for directions to places they’ve never been.” You are the captain of your soul ship. You are the only one who can navigate this journey. No polls necessary.
Go ahead and flip the record that has been playing in your head. Embrace the new and unknown as necessary points upon the life path. Embrace open skies with excitement rather than fear — a new chapter, a new story, a new blank canvas to paint all over — finger paint or broad sweeping strokes, the pace is up to you.
And love yourself through it, in all your feelings. Life is a ride down a curvy mountain road at times…and at others, solitary moments of basking in stillness. No matter where life finds you, believe in your ability to navigate it, nurture yourself and just be. Sometimes we are not meant to fix anything, but rather observe it. It is in that solitude of life on the edge that you will hear the wisdom from within.
Have a seat next to me and listen in.
As always, you + me + all of us = a bounty of best self wisdom to share. How do you deal with life’s uncertainty? Does it make you squirm? Do you run around trying to ‘fix’ it…or do you see it as a great activator? I’d love to hear how this plays out for you.