Tuesday, May 23, 2017

On the Other Side, Part 1 of 2: Prepare

This morning a woman shared some wisdom with me: sometimes we have catastrophes in our lives that knock us down, and sometimes we're just walking on pebbles for days and days and days. Continuously walking on uneven stony ground becomes painful, but the end doesn't seem to be in sight. The trials may not be catastrophic, but they are continuous, and so tiring. Both types of trials can be very difficult to bear.

We may have seasons of sunshine and wellness, but without a doubt, trials come to all—big or small, brief or ongoing. Which leads me to the point:

Control what you can, and prepare for whatever comes.

I was listening to a podcast in which the interviewee, a runner, shared this advice. In relation to pre-race anxiety, a friend advised him to control what he could in his preparation and training, and then take the race day as it comes.

But when he said this, I heard so much more. I heard:

Dedicate time every day for spiritual study, so you’ll be ready when the “storms” come.

Work toward self reliance, financial security, getting your food storage up to date, etc., so you’ll be ready if those literal storms come.

Read that book, take that training, or get that degree now, because you never know what situation you will be in in the future, and what skills and education you’ll need at that time.

Start taking the steps to eat a bit healthier. Increase your physical activity even just a bit. It will matter when you have to fight that cold, physically care for a loved one, or fight greater health challenges that you may someday face.

Make time to show love—call a grandparent, send a thank you card, order a second soda to surprise a friend, pay for the person behind you in the drive thru, make that difficult apology, tell someone what you appreciate about them. When we spread light, we receive light.

And intentionally fill life with goodness—savor that delicious meal, watch that movie you’ve been meaning to watch, make that dream vacation a reality, do something that scares/delights/empowers you, take a walk on a sunny day, take a walk on a rainy day and embrace it, make gratitude lists, and maybe take time to just BE. Fill your heart up to sustain it at harder times.

I should note, you can also prepare for blessings! Change bad habits, let go of negative influences, get rid of even physical objects that have no purpose in your life anymore, and create space for more—emotionally, physically, and mentally.

Control what you can, and prepare for whatever comes. Your foundation will better withstand those catastrophes, and the soles of your shoes will become more durable, and more capable of cushioning those pebbles.

Part 2 coming Thursday!

No comments: