While reality stares at us intensely, we realize that life unfolds in its own way. Our only choice is to embrace the uncertainties and continue our work.
Reverb is a wonderful community. In December last year, I participated in many of the daily Reverb prompts, and they triggered good thoughts, smart self-reflection, and meaningful intentions. Moving forward this year, monthly prompts are sent. The May prompt asked, essentially, are any of the things you wanted to happen happening?
The question is a checkpoint one. Are you doing what you said you were going to do?
It is a good question to ask, yet it is one in which the answers can be frustrating and a little discouraging. There is always more progress to be made, yet so many things get in the way. There are work challenges, family issues, environment changes, unexpected barriers, prolonged dependencies, and the list clutters up quickly with all the unplanned things growing faster than the planned ones.
Everything I wanted to happen is not happening as I would like them to happen. We pace in seemingly endless layered circles, never really moving forward, just moving into a new loop of fruitless activity.
And then the unexpected startles us. We feel a sense of calm. We see the path forward. We hear the encouraging words. We smell the bloom of an opportunity unfolding. We grasp what we have been working so hard on.
In the dust of uncertainty and the sweat of effort, the momentum of our work begins to show, and we step over, around, or through the challenges that have popped up along the way. We deal with things. Things begin to happen. The plan we had may not be in the crisp condition it was at the start, but anything worthwhile to pursue takes on added character as real conditions form around as we put the actions into action.
Being in the arena is the only way good stuff happens. Watching a game is never like playing the game, so we must jump in and do.
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Any of Your Plans Working as Planned?
The section headings in this article sound like the way 2011 has gone for me so far.
Lately I’ve been alternating between Life Clarifies and Progress Manifests. But first I had to have the painful experience of setting the wrong goals, getting burned out, going through a time of emptiness and then slowly finding my way back to the path. But it’s a different path – not where I thought I was going from the vantage point of January 1.
I’m starting to find different ways to perceive the things I saw as obstacles on my new path. Yes, they’re now seeming more like challenges.
I couldn’t have related to this article very well back a few months ago but now it makes complete sense to me. Thank you for writing this.
I hope your 2011 continues to unfold in ways you want it to. What I have learned is that sometimes the challenging times do the most to clarify what we should really be doing. Thank you for your comments, and all the best in the months ahead!
Uncanny, but the same day I read your article I noticed this quote in a book I’d read before. This line had never particularly jumped out at me until then:
“By consciously rising to meet challenges, we transform them into opportunities.” – Sharon Jeffers, Cards of Destiny