I just returned from a wonderful little vacation in Seattle, if you haven't been, I highly recommend taking a few days to visit. There are so many quaint experiences to be had: From the momentary bursts of rain that the locals refer to as 'spit' (because frankly, that's about as bad as it gets), to the endearing observation of when the sun comes out - the locals have a cow and say 'The mountain is out!' because they can see Mount Rainier that is normally disguised by looming fog and clouds. From the architecture, the art, and the food, to the beautiful juxtaposition of the city with it's ever-growing tech population amongst the nature that is being preserved within the city, as well as the immense evergreen forests, mountains and water that surrounds it (the views from the Space Needle and other high points in the city such as Queen Anne Hill are to die for).
I found myself reflecting on my interactions with the world while I was staring off into the majestic Puget Sound, watching boats of every size moving like ballerinas across The Drink (another colloquialism from a local). Each boat left a different wake behind it, some left a little frothy trail and some left a huge dip in the water, with overflow creating a rip tide for everyone trailing behind. There is a wonderful saying that I heard from another dear 3 Principles practitioner, Barbara Patterson, that was so apropos to the moment...
What is the wake you leave behind you when you interact with the world?
Isn't that a fabulous question for reflection? It isn't about walking on egg shells because you don't want to bother anyone and create a wake - it's an opportunity to take in and observe the experience others have of you as you walk through life. Without creating more thinking around how you should be, or judgement on how you've been, just take in the understanding that you always leave a trail of influence behind you, a feeling, and just having that idea in mind will begin to open your eyes to it. You know how once you learn more about something, no matter how big or small, your understanding naturally widens? Your world gets bigger just by gaining that knowledge? That's what I'm talking about here. Just by considering the question, What is the wake you leave behind you? Your perspective has already began to open up.
On that same idea but the flip side of the coin, have you ever noticed that you can often sense the feeling behind what someone is saying more than what is coming out of their mouth? Start to pay attention to it next time you interact with someone. The deeper you get into the understanding that your thoughts are your own and that you have your own experience of life unfolding in your head that no one else is privy to except you, the more you'll effortlessly want to be in the moment and experience the person in front of you in real time, as opposed to seeing them through the lens of your thinking that is mucking up their shine. Like I was sharing earlier, the awareness alone naturally brings you to the moment and allows for connection from your heart to the heart of others. You can clearly hear the intention behind what they're saying, then connection, magic and love unfolds. Truly! Even with the banker who is having a bad day and is a bit snippy with you: When you aren't in your world of thought during the interaction (aka: "Geez, he's crabby, he doesn't have to be treating me this way, should I tell a supervisor? Ugh, he's moving so slow, this is such an easy transaction!") you can sense what is up with them, that it isn't personal to you, and have empathy and love. Again, there is nothing to 'do' here, just the awareness opens your eyes to how you interact - where you're coming from when you speak to others and the influence you leave behind - both being the ever important feeling that leads to connection.
We returned from Seattle on Friday and over the weekend I was experiencing that energy drain that comes after vacation - you know the feeling, I need a vacation from my vacation? Yes, that one. And my dear husband Mike kept inquiring on if I was ok or not, if I needed something or if he needed to talk me out of my proverbial tree. Each time he would ask me, I would go inside, take a look around to make sure I wasn't overthinking anything or stressing about life. And each time I would recognize that I was truly peaceful feeling, I was just literally drained of energy (unusual for the old me, the old me would sense something off inside of me then I'd instantly get spun up about different things I thought I should be worrying about. But as the understanding of how my mind works has gone deeper, the more peaceful I've become - HALLELU!) Admittedly however, each time he would ask me, my thoughts would get a little more wound up around wishing he'd leave me alone because the inquiring was triggering me to analyze more and more - to look for dirt that didn't exist. So in that moment, I observed my thinking and saw that I was beginning to get irritated thoughts when the feeling behind what he was saying was purely love and care. Full stop. Instantly and without effort I was then able to speak to that feeling, because I felt it too. I was able to thank him for how much he cared for my well being and that each time he inquired actually made my mind want to jump off a cliff that didn't exist, so being quiet and hanging out together was all the fix I needed. What an incredible relief that was to him, and to me. It's incredible how much crap we create when we are listening through the noise of our busy minds as opposed to our peaceful heart.
With all of this reflecting I leave you with this: It's all in a feeling. When we're in touch with the feeling, we naturally are moved to it's attention and out of our distracting thoughts. We are all connected, we are all moving through life trying to make sense of our own personal thought world, even though it looks like we're trying to make sense of the world around us. The closer we are to ourselves, our home, the closer we are to each other.
Here's a little snippet of our ride down the Space Needle to give you a sense of the beauty of Seattle (and a quick hi from our very cheery elevator host who was in the greatest of moods because 'the mountain was out'). And yes... I added the tunes.
All my love and see you next week,