Most people do not fully engage in life. For many reasons, too many to write about in a brief blog, many people are unable to fully embrace life as it happens to them and engage in it fully. They are hesitant in relationships. They are not fully open to others so others never see the real person that they are. They have been hurt and so have withdrawn in all relationships and don’t let the mask down so that you can come to really know them as a person. They may even be afraid that if you get to know them you won’t like what you see and will reject them, leave them.
A few months ago I read a book that gave some guidelines that help each one of us to leave the ‘hiddenness’ and embrace the real person that is seldom seen and often is not even known by you – because you hide you from you. These are guidelines that we all need to cultivate so that we can come out of the closet and be yourself when with others.
1> Cultivate Authenticity. Letting go of what people think about you or might think about you if they ever do.
2> Cultivate Self-Compassion. Letting go of perfectionism. You can never be perfect so stop trying. Be present and not perfect as another book I recently read recommends.
3> Cultivate a resilient spirit. Letting go of numbing and powerlessness. Stop living life in a state of ‘no feelings’ and start taking control of your life starting with your feelings. Take ownership of your life and be responsible for what happens in life.
4> Cultivate gratitude and joy. This means letting go of the feeling that you don’t yet have enough to be happy or content and also learning to no longer live with the fear that what you have may not be enough or that you may even lose what “little you have.”
5> Cultivate intuition and trusting faith. This means letting go of the need for certainty.
6> Cultivate creativity. Letting go of comparison and simply being yourself – and you are created in God’s image and He is the Creator so cultivate that side of your being.
7> Cultivate play and rest. This means letting go of exhaustion as a status symbol and productivity as how you earn and recognize your self-worth.
8> Cultivate calm and stillness. Letting go of anxiety and worry as a lifestyle.
9> Cultivate meaning fun work. Letting go of self-doubt and “supposed to” as you no longer live by the expectations of others and the general society.
10> Cultivate laughter, song, and dance. Letting go of being cool and ‘always in control.’
This is called “wholehearted living.” Wholehearted living is about engaging in our lives from a place of worthiness. It means cultivating the courage, compassion, and connection with yourself and others to wake up in the morning and think: “No matter what gets done and how much is left undone, I am enough.” It is going to bed at night thinking, “Yes, I am imperfect and vulnerable and sometimes afraid, but that doesn’t change the truth that I am also brave and worthy of love and belonging.”
Wholehearted living is not earning your worth but recognizing that you are worthy just because you are you.