I think we can all agree that so far, this year has a little bit of a groundhog day vibe to it. Finding flow seems to be a bit tricky, and the nature of all that is going on around us is daunting to say the least. A friend recently said this is all "emotionally confusing" and I think that pretty much sums it up.
I am a firm believer that seeking inspiration and staying engaged is the key to living a healthy, happy, and fulfilled life. When we become complacent in any area, we run the risk of losing some of the life in living. This isn't to say that a frantic hunt for stimulation is healthy, or that we should constantly be searching for more. What I'm speaking of is more about being mindfully engaged in your life, being curious, making an effort to avoid ruts, and moving towards the things that light you up. This space of exploration or play is often where the most profound ideas exist, and where we can access our higher potential.
I read somewhere that most memories - or life marks - are actually made in the unexpected moments, the memory moments that go beyond your daily routine. Both good and bad. Of course, routine and stability are important, but ending the sentence with an exclamation point is often more fun. The importance of taking the time to explore things of interest, learn something new, read a book on a subject you know nothing about, listen to a podcast, make a new recipe, take a trip - anything that keeps your mind working outside of its own box is a way to expand. And you will expand! It is also a way to add value to the life you are living and give periods of time certain trademarks. This was my holiday felting experience. (Yes, felting).
We live in a culture where a robotic sense of living is almost idealized. The capitalist dream of productivity is a bit of an addiction. The hallmark of accomplishment is how "busy" you are. How much you get done in a day. It is maybe only now - with all that is going on, that people are truly starting to evaluate their work/life balance - and take inventory of their time and relationships.
As weird as it is to actually think about, time is the only thing that is truly limited.
With February here, we tend to think of romantic love. What does living a life more fulfilled have to do with romantic love? Well... a lot.
The most cliche thing out there is to say "love yourself first", but don't we all know this to be true? Finding the spice in your own life, being happy entertaining yourself - these are the tools that attract a mate. And if you're already partnered up? The same is true. It's all about staying alive, engaged, curious, and not taking things for granted. In a partnership - this is the vitality that keeps people together. Sometimes your passions may look different, and that’s ok. It is equally important to give each other space as it is to find creative outlets and adventures together - but there needs to be that balance.
When curiosity is alive, we not only awaken a sense of discovery, we bring to life possibilities that we didn't even know exist. Dreams literally unfold that you may not have been able to imagine or predict. Shifts happen that you might not necessarily expect. This isn't some wellness chatter - this is the truth. We all tend to think we know more than we actually do. We all often rely on this idea that we have things mostly figured out. It makes us too vulnerable to think otherwise. But in a world full of randomness and different ways of seeing things - challenging our own belief systems and exercising our range of curiosity is the way forward. When we shut down, we stay bored - or worse, angry, and that sucks.
When it comes to relationships, I would predict that the number one thing that initiates demise is a lack of interest. Or perhaps there is one partner who wants to improve while the other stagnates. This all equates to taking each other for granted and forgetting why you fell in love in the first place. I don't know that there is such a thing as getting "too comfortable" in a secure relationship. A healthy relationship SHOULD be comfortable - just not taken for granted.
One of my favorite quotes of all time is from Tom Robbins, "Breathe properly. Stay curious. And eat your beets."
This is our resolution now, and always.