Today, feel that any concern of yours (mental, physical, emotional) is wrapped in Love, held in Love. Today, you don't need to know how a problem will be solved. You don't need to make a plan. Offer the concern to Love to share with you. Let Love hold it, surround it, permeate it.
Today, know that you are the very manifestation of Love's being. Love didn't create you and then abandon you to time and suffering. You are Love acting in this moment. That is your nature and purpose.
It is easy to think of ourselves as underdeveloped, flawed, or broken. Today, look at yourself with a spiritual lens. Begun with the assumption of your spiritual completeness, wholeness. You are not, with limited expertise and resources, trying to fix a damaged or incomplete self. You are reveling in discovering the fullness that already is.
Today, accept that you don't know.
You don't fully understand that person or see how best to support them. You don't know how to address social/political/environmental issues. You don't know the next step in your career. Maybe your priorities aren't clear to you. Your own behavior may be a mystery to you.
We resist not-knowing. It makes us feel uncertain and unsafe. It goes against our desire to see ourselves as wise and competent. In control.
Recognize that not knowing, if you fully admit it to yourself, can be a holy state - a place of humility, openness, and receptivity into which the divine can speak.
Today, admit that you don't know or understand. Treat your unknowing with great kindness, with a sense of curiosity.
To build happy, healthy relationships with people, it's important to build in time together, without agenda - no goal other than to appreciate each other and enjoy each other's company - no underlying agenda of teaching or changing or making progress. This is particularly important for teachers, parents, and partners. Presence and appreciation is where we build the solid, enduring, satisfying ground of our relationships.
We can also commit to this agenda-less time together with Love-God: a prayer which is not asking or complaining, but sitting in the lap of Love, holding Love's hand, playing with Love, accepting the divine hug.
We can also give ourselves time where we ask nothing of ourselves rather than to be with ourselves, free from judgement and efforts of self-improvement.
Some of us (read me) are uncomfortable with conflict. Often, we see harmony as evidence of Love-at-Work in a situation. And I have had amazing experiences in which I could feel Love's presence, which (to echo the Bible), exalted the valleys, lowered the mountains, and made crooked paths straight.
At the same time, sometimes when we are taking positive steps forward, we do encounter resistance - from inside ourselves and externally. The human mind is often uncomfortable with change, even positive movement, because we are stepping into the unknown. Others people may fear we are moving away from them or taking something from them. They may have a limited understand of our situation and react with strong opinions.
Don't let inevitable resistance discourage you. Although sometimes conflict can be a warning that we are pushing in the wrong direction, it can be also be a sign that we are doing everything right, taking brave, positive, important steps.
Today, at least three times (maybe schedule them on your calendar), take a mini-vacation. Pause. Let go of running over tasks and responsibilities, let go of goals and evaluation, let go of opinions and planning. Just be. Soak in the details of your present place and moment. Be with yourself, un-layered by all the roles you play in life. Don't demand anything of yourself or others.
Today, if you have some task you want to accomplish, some change you need to make, some area in which you want to grow, do not try to force it with willpower. The use of willpower often stems from the assumption that we are faulty, ignorant, stubborn, prone to laziness and relapse--and need to be whipped into shape.
Instead, be motivated by love for your future self. You want to make this change and accomplish this goal as a gift of love to your future self. This begins with an assumption of your worth and deservedness.
Think about those people in your lives who have big feelings, but you are not afraid of them (either them or their feelings). You don't feel the need to fix them or their lives. You treat them with kindness and good humor. You don't dismiss their feelings, but you don't get stirred up about them either. You know, with certainty, they have the capacity to deal with their difficulties. Even when they become dramatic, you stay still and steady because you are full of trust.
Today, treat your own emotions the same way. Don't push them away or try to cover them or fight them. Don't over-attend to them with fear. Hold them with respect and good humor. Gently ask if they have some important information for you; if they don't, let them have their little dramatic moment and pass away, without worry.
Here is one of the ways we trick ourselves:
We imagine that we have responsibility for things that are not our job or out of our control and spend lots of energy fretting over them.
We resist or avoid those important things over which we do have some influence, maybe because we are scared of change, weariness, disappointment, conflict, or not meeting our own unrealistic standards.
Today, you don't need to make any changes. Just notice. Notice where your mind focuses its attention and efforts. Ask yourself, "Is that my responsibility?" Be willing to look at anything you have may been avoiding with your grandiose guilt about not saving the world.
Tarn Wilson is the author of the memoir The Slow Farm and numerous essays. You may read more of her work at tarnwilson.com.