Day 138/366 days Towards Self-Mastery.
How do we reconcile living well, living authentically, when we have to go out to work each day in order to make ends meet?
We can spend at least 8 hours a day at work, and that doesn't include the time to prepare and travel to and from. In terms of our waking time each day, that consumes most of it.
Can we really say that we are living our most authentic life? Are we spending those hours in the pursuit of our values and the activities that provide true meaning in life?
The great work of our life is the work that touches us deeply.
That has meaning and purpose. That taps into our interests, our experience and our skills. Are we doing that work?
How do we fathom the compromise between providing for our family and committing our life to this great work?
In many ways I consider myself lucky in that I have always worked in an area that has been deeply satisfying, and continue to do so.
For many women and no doubt men as well, that's not the case. For just 5 years I had a sense of what it feels like to work in a job that didn't align with my values and beliefs. That didn't make my heart sing for joy with each new day. This experience gave me a taste of what so many must experience on a daily basis. It's mind numbingly depressing to work in this way.
Discovering that my body is my very best barometer in this regard. Checking in to see if the thing that I choose feels good to me has been one of my greatest learnings. A long time ago I made the decision that I would not entertain anything that didn't feel good.
Not entirely focused on work at the time, I simply knew that if my body didn't feel good, then it was unlikely to remain healthy for the long term. What we feel is our body's resonance. It needs to feel good to feel healthy.
The solutions are not easy. Mine are in the words I write everyday here. Simplifying my life, reducing my outgoings, lowering my expectations to realistic, reducing the access that marketing spin had to my ears, all made it possible to live my best life.
366 days Towards Self-Mastery
When I considered my New Year's intentions for 2020 I had just one: To allow my heart to love what it loved...and let it lead me. (If not now, then when?)
I've spent months working on integrating my life. To live life more fully with my home life, my interests, my work, my responsibilities, all coming together, all connected. I want to give each the attention that they desire and need, and still have time and energy for the others. That means living and working from the heart.
As I was clearing out my bookshelf over the Christmas break I discovered Simple Abundance. I set it aside to explore it on New Year's Day as I lazed through another delicious day of nothingness. Sarah, the author, says this book is about living in grace. Living in grace I realised, is about Self-Mastery.
My thirst for understanding the human condition has driven me all my life, and hand-in-hand with self-mastery it has been a life-long goal. And seeing as I love to write, that living in grace is about self-mastery, and I love a bit of a challenge, then if I am truly going to let my heart lead, I really don't have any other choice. So scary as it feels, I'm starting out on a daily mission of leaning into the suggestions of this daybook and making a daily post to keep me accountable. If not now, then when?
I'm Josie. You can find out a little more about me here.
Simple Abundance: A Daybook of Comfort and Joy: by Sarah Ban Breathnach.
This book is written for the Australian and NZ market because it refers to seasonal changes. It's available on Amazon here if you'd like to follow along.