Looking for inspiration, with our eyes wide shut.

Posted by on Sep 24, 2014 in healing, inspiration, self-healing, truth | 1 comment

Ever since I’ve started the process of building my own practice, learning and becoming certified in as many tools as I can, to help my fellow adult survivors of child abuse – I am always trying to look for inspiration.  Being a mom of four kids, I get that inspiration in all kinds of ways.  Right down to stepping on a Lego piece for the umpteenth time, and after the cursing and jump-dancing while tightly gripping my foot, I realize that life is just like this.  You cruise along on auto-pilot, and sometimes you have to step on a Lego piece, and be startled painfully back into your actual reality.

There are days where the inspiration comes clearly, and with the fullforce of the universe shouting, “Look!  See!  Right here!  Isn’t this amazing!”.  I’ve come to really appreciate those days, and I try like hell to make sure I’m documenting them somehow.  A lot of times it’s by posting on my personal facebook page, so I can recall it later on.  Other times, it’s by committing it to my memory, and then writing it down later on in my journal.

Then there’s most days – where I’m trucking along, focusing primarily on existing, and getting through the day.  These are the days where it’s suddenly 9 pm and I think to myself, “where has the day gone?”.  I’ve had weeks go by like this.  All of a sudden it’s Thursday, and I didn’t do a single thing productive all week.  I focused on lunches, and getting up in the morning, and “what in the heck am I doing for dinner tonight, yep…it’s another grilled cheese and soup night”.  I would go to bed each night, staring at an empty journal page, wishing for inspiration, willing myself to be more open, more aware, tomorrow.  Then the alarm goes off in the morning, and I find myself staring at that same page the following night, thinking the exact same thing.

How can we be open, and more aware, to those “Ah HA!” moments, if we are looking around with our eyes wide shut?  This may bring to mind a very risque and odd movie from back in the 90’s.  I want you to focus on the phrase itself, and what you think it really means.  I’ve found it to mean that I’m desperately working hard to see everything around me, but I’m not allowing myself to actually focus on it.  It’s kind of like listening to music with an old school dial to lock into the radio signal.  If it’s not precisely locked on, and completely tuned in, you can sort of hear the music, but there’s a lot of static too.  Then you find yourself focusing on the static because, well, it’s annoying to your senses.  You don’t focus on the music itself.

Looking for daily inspiration with our eyes wide shut, is a lot like this.  We have our eyes open, but they are blinded, distracted, by the daily static of existence.  How are you going to see that gorgeous butterfly that just fluttered by, to remind you of how unique and beautiful you really are, if you are focusing on the fact that you are running late to your appt, again, and you are in a mad dash to get into your car, carrying three bags, and your travel coffee mug?

How can you see the beauty of our existence, that humanity is powerful and real, that kindness is pure and real, if all you focus on is the negatives – the news; the facebook and twitter posts; the fact that you just lost your cool again because you are tired, hungry, or just pushed too far; the negative people that come and go in our daily lives, because they, too, are tired, hungry, or just pushed too far.

So how do you open your eyes?  The answer is frustratingly simple – you stop and actually look around you.  You tune in and listen clearly.

I’ve printed and put these quotes on my mirror, over the years, to adjust my own eyes:

“Do not dwell in the past, do not dream of the future, concentrate the mind on the present moment.” – Buddha

“If we are not fully ourselves, truly in the present moment, we miss everything.” ― Thích Nhất Hạnh, Peace Is Every Step: The Path of Mindfulness in Everyday Life.

Can you stop, and allow yourself to be in the present moment?  Are you able to see all of the inspiration and beauty that surrounds you every day?  Are you willing to open your eyes?

Live your life, in such a way, that you stop and appreciate because something, anything, affected you, or made you see something in a new light.  Seek out what life has to offer, so that you have something to write on your journal page at the end of the day.  It’s all there, you just have to be willing to actually see it, and hear it.  Sometimes, it’s in that one song that comes on when you needed to hear it most, that one lyric that hits you in your core.  Other times, it’s that moment where you are watching a tv show, distracting yourself from life, and that character says something that makes you go, “Yeah….that’s really true. Wow.”  It can even be like my Lego moment, where once the pain subsides, you realize something profound.

There is inspiration all around us, every day.    Instead of being in the “have to”, “wish I had”, and the negative’s of crappy attitudes from others, the news, and just general unrest and chaos that can easily absorb your focus; be in the here, the now, the present.  Tune out the static, stop, listen and watch for the profound, the inspirational, the amazing.  It will take some practice, as all new learning experiences do, but this one…this is a game changer.  Allow yourself to learn how to adjust your radar, and you’ll start to see amazing inspiration, with your eyes wide open, every day.

Blessings to you,
Heather Durling, The Phoenix Gathering
“One Starfish at a Time”


copyright 2014 The Phoenix Gathering.  All rights reserved.

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