I just got back from a six day meditation retreat where I hardly spoke at all. Shocking but true.
I wasn't there to teach or to coach. I was there for me. And the best part, I was alone. No man. No daughter. No body. It was blissful. Now, don't get me wrong I love being with my man and my little girl and I love being in the middle of a Fearless crowd. I am just saying it was nice for a change not to do anything but sit in the silence, lie in the silence, read in the silence, eat in the silence...you get the idea.
Silence is an opportunity for a new kind of bliss. Not one of stimulation or entertainment but of self-awareness.
Fearless Living is all about self-awareness. Most people think they are self-aware because they think they 'know' what is wrong with them. They just figure they can't fix it or they don't know how or they don't want to. To all of those folks I would say YOU ARE WRONG. Usually what people think is 'wrong' with them is so not the real issue at all. But they don't want to know the truth because as long as they think they know they can rationalize pretty much anything. Frankly, knowing what is so-called 'wrong' with you has little to do with self-awareness but more to do with how well you beat yourself up in order to keep yourself small.
What is self-awareness? Enlightening on one hand, painful on the other. And the pain, hate to say it, comes before the enlightenment.
When you are truly willing to become aware, you must be willing to see yourself in real terms, in the light of day - so to speak. No hiding, no avoiding, no story-telling, no making the picture pretty, no b.s. Just you, all of you, with all of your unfulfilled potential, pitfalls, struggles, addictions (emotional or otherwise), greatness, lies, personality, wins and loses, postive assets, personal values, integrity or lack thereof, etc. All of you. Period.
And that isn't easy to face. We want to think we are either doing better or worse than we really are. Better for obvious reasons and worse so we can prove to ourselves that there is a gosh-darn-good-reason we haven't lived the dream, our dream.
It is down right scary to sit in the silence for six days.
It was only me and my thoughts for one hundred and forty-four hours. All my thoughts..the dreamy thoughts, the hopeful thoughts, the loser thoughts, the what-do-you-think-you-are-doing thoughts, the giving up thoughts, the lonely thoughts, the frustrating thoughts, the revenge thoughts, the jealous thoughts, the wishful thoughts, the I-can-do-it thoughts, the you-aren't-enough thoughts, the wake-up and smell the roses thoughts, the I-believe-in-Fearless-Living thoughts, the can-I-really-change-change-the-world thoughts, the you-aren't-enough thoughts, the no-one-understands-me thoughts, the am-I-really-loved? thoughts, the I-gotta-do-it thoughts, the hopeful thoughts, the loving thoughts, the compassionate-filled thoughts, the thankful thoughts, etc etc etc.
All those thoughts were barraging me for six days and all I could do was sit, observe and breathe, alot.
In and out. Watch your breath. Sit up straight. Legs are tingling. Stretch. Breathe. In and out. Thought. Thought. Thought. Thought. Remember to watch your breath. Reign those thoughts in. Breathe. Breathe. Breathe.
And I loved it.
When one is willing to truly be fearless, you must eventually reach the place in your path that meditation becomes a part of it. Is it hard? Yes. Is it worth it? Yes. Will you know and experience the benefits right away? No. Not at all. You won't know it for days or weeks or months. But you will know it eventually. And when you do, you will truly understand the power of being self-aware.
Because when you become self-aware, you are truly in charge of your mind, your heart, your life. You see the dance of fear and you decide whether to engage or not. When you are self-aware, I guarantee that you will have better partners to choose from...called happiness, peace of mind and personal satisfaction. So much better than dancing with fear that keeps stepping on your toes.
Be Fearless. In the next week, sit in silence and just pay attention to your breath for five minutes. I will take one minute. But give it a shot. All you have to lose is fear.
Here is to a Fearless New Year...together, we can make a Fearless World. I believe...