Today, work on letting go of what is not yours to carry. We often carry the psychic weight of family members' suffering, and we carry fears for our friends. In an effort to help, we sometimes carry, not only other's emotions, but also their responsibilities. We do for others what they should do for themselves for their own growth and sense of efficacy. Today, before you take on responsibility for others, first feel Love present with them, guiding and sustaining. Before you take responsibility for others, feel Love present with you, giving you peace and affection and wisdom in your words and actions.
Today, create judgement free zones, moments during the day where you give yourself a rest from the evaluation of yourself and others. During these moments, you will not try to fix yourself, others, or your situation. You will not strive to improve or correct. You will appreciate yourself and others just as you are. These moments will provide true rest and, from them, will spring genuine wisdom.
Today, let go of comparisons between yourself and others. Today, let go of comparison between yourself and your ideal version of yourself, where you will always be found wanting. Today, do what is yours to do, with steadiness and without self-doubt. Today, savor what is rich in your life.
The Bible says that "the kingdom of God is within you." Feel, inside yourself, that you have a firm, steady foundation. You have within you the creativity and discernment you need for today. You have a deep and embracing love for yourself, others, your world. You have rest and renewal. You have beauty. You have wisdom. Today, take time to pause, visit that kingdom within, and claim its riches.
Today, no matter how rapid and unsettling the pace of change around you, know that you stand on solid, unshakable ground, a spiritual foundation that holds you steady. You can't see this ground (which is Love itself), but you can feel it, holding you, supporting you, giving you a sense of stability.
Wayne Muller in his book A Life of Being, Having, and Doing Enough says that the root of most of our suffering comes from comparing our lives to the "long list" we have in our mind of "how things should have gone, what life should look like, and who [we] should be by now." Our greatest joy, in contrast, comes from being "seen, known, and loved just as we are." Today, let go of your list. Today, forgive yourself for something. Today, notice something rich and beautiful in your life.
From Wayne Muller's A Life of Being, Having, and Doing Enough:
What would it be like to attend more faithfully to the inner voices that speak to us of the way our body wants to move through this day, the gentle tempo of our heart, the slower gait of a stroll--rather than a punishing marathon--through the events of the day? We presume that pushing the pace of our day is the only way to make it through, to get caught up, to get things done. Yet how many of us have found, when all external pressure is relieved and we are left to our own natural rhythm, that we find we can actually get more things done, more easily and effectively? . . . Can we imagine beginning our day with a gentle intention to set the pace of our day, the speed, the way we move in the world, the way we make our choices, attentive to the reliable inner rhythms that guide our body and heart?
From Wayne Muller's A Life of Having, Being, and Doing Enough:
"With the advancing tsunami of ubiquitous communication--from email to cell phones, websites to pagers, fax machines to text messages, webcams, and emerging social networking tools like Facebook and Twitter--everyone seems to feel they should be able to find us whenever they want. If they want to contact us, or know where we are, or talk to us, meet with us, make a request, even demand a response, there are fewer places to hide and hardly any acceptable excuses for denying anyone, anywhere, anytime, virtually unlimited access to our lives . . .
If we are no longer in control of our own lives and are instead subject to the whims and demands of others, how can we not gradually, instinctively, even unintentionally constrict in worry and fear? How can we ever feel the spacious freedom to dream, create, allow our unfettered hearts and minds to germinate without fear of interruption? Tender seedlings of life, any life, require some cocoon, some greenhouse, some womb of uninterrupted protection to grow well."
From Wayne Muller's A LIfe of Being, Having, and Doing, Enough:
Living and loving well requires us to make difficult choices each day of our lives. The heart-opening unconditional love we seek requires our heart's best time and attention. Love, friendship, children, kindness, good and fruitful work--all these things need time, accompanied by our full, unhurried, undistracted attention. Because the sheer number of hours in a day is limited, we much choose where, when, and with whom we will share whatever brief time and attention we have.
Here is where most of us fall apart. We have convinced ourselves that we can keep taking on more and more, just this one more thing, one more task, relationship, commitment. But at the end of the day, nothing ever receives the benefit of our best love, care, attention. . . .
Once we have reached this moment of fullness, of satiation--of enough--we can only pick up a new egg if we carefully take at least one from the existing pile in our hands and gently put it down. We must let something go. This is no judgement about our ability, skillfulness, or power. It is simply the inevitable physics of a human life.
Today, take time to pause and feel presence of Love deep in your being and surrounding you. During this time, let go of asking, wishing, worrying, planning, decision-making, distractions, and opinions. Feel yourself cherished. Stay as long as you can and know there is no better use of your time.
Tarn Wilson is the author of the memoir The Slow Farm and numerous essays. You may read more of her work at tarnwilson.com.