Thursday, October 2, 2008
Another excerpt from The Age of Miracles
One day I looked at myself in the mirror and indulged in full-scale self pity. Oh….I remember when I was young, I thought. "My skin was tighter, my breasts were higher, my rear was firmer, my entire body was voluptuous, I had so much more energy, I glowed, I wish I realized what I had when I had it….now I'll never have it again."
Then there was another voice in my head that interviened that said "oh, SHUT UP!" Let me give you a run down of what it was really like when you were younger.
Your nerves were jangled.
Your heart was restless.
Your mind was disordered.
Your appetites were addictive.
Your love affairs were tragic.
Your talents were squandered.
Your opportunities were wasted.
And you were never at peace.
What you did then, in fact, is exactly what you are doing now. You kept thinking……that if only things were different you'd be happy. So then, it was what ever man or job or resources were there to save you. Now, it's…"if only you were still young."
So reality check…..in those days:
You looked good but didn't know it.
You had everything but you didn't appreciate it.
You had the world at your feet but you didn't realize it.
You know what it was like??? It was just like now!
And thus began my recovery from youthitis. I slip back into it every once in a while, but as time goes on, I snap out of it faster and faster. I realize it's nothing more than a mental habit to idealize another time, another condition, another reality, as simply a way to avoid the reality of my life right now. And in avoiding the reality of our present circumstances we avoid the miracles they offer. Everyone does it, because that's the way the ego mind works. But we can stare down this self-defeating habit and cultivate a truer perspective , that wherever we are is the perfect place, and whatever time it is now is the perfect time. That doesn't mean we can't or shouldn't improve things, particularly ourselves. But indulging the thought that if only we were younger things would be better is a sure fire way to age with pain.
Living in the Present Moment
The current book I am reading is by Marianne Williamson. The follow blog is an excerpt from her book The Age of Miracles: I highly recommend this book to those of us in mid life and beyond.
"Wherever you've been, whatever you've done so far your entire life was building up to this moment. Now is the time to burst forth into your greatness. A greatness you could never have achieved without going through exactly the things you have gone through. Everything you've experienced was grist for the mill by which you became who you are. It is not too late. You are not too old. You are right on time. And you are better than you know."
At a certain point life becomes less about who you're becoming and more about who you've become. What you used to think of as the future has become the present and you can't help but wonder if your life wouldn't be better if you had just lived it more fully back then. But how could you? You were so busy thinking about the future.
But once you are past a certain age, you cannot believe that you wasted even one minute of your youth not enjoying it. And the last thing you want to do now is steel any more life from yourself by failing to be deeply in it while it's happening. You finally get it, not just theoretically, but viscerally….That THIS MOMENT IS ALL WE HAVE. You don't close your eyes anymore and wonder who you might be in 20 years. If you're smart, you study the tape of your current existence to monitor how you are doing now. You begin to see the present as an ongoing act of creation. You look more closely at your thoughts, behavior, and interactions with others. You understand that if you are coming at life from fear and separation, then you have no reason but to expect fear and separation in return. You seek to increase your strengths and decrease your weaknesses. You look at your wounds and you ask God to heal them. You ask forgiveness for the things you are ashamed of. You no longer seek your satisfaction in things outside yourself, or completion in other people, or peace of mind in either the past or the future. You are who you are. Not who you might one day be. Your life is what it is. Not what it might someday be. Focusing on who you are and what your life is right now, you've come to the ironic and almost amusing realization that, actually the real fun is in the journey itself.
I love ee cummings. I have been a fan since high school (a pretty long time). His poetry is subtly errotic, if you have ever really studied it.
somewhere i have never travelled,gladly beyond
by E. E. Cummings
somewhere i have never travelled,gladly beyond
any experience,your eyes have their silence:
in your most frail gesture are things which enclose me,
or which i cannot touch because they are too near
your slightest look will easily unclose me
though i have closed myself as fingers,
you open always petal by petal myself as Spring opens
(touching skilfully,mysteriously)her first rose
or if your wish be to close me, i and
my life will shut very beautifully ,suddenly,
as when the heart of this flower imagines
the snow carefully everywhere descending;
nothing which we are to perceive in this world equals
the power of your intense fragility:whose texture
compels me with the color of its countries,
rendering death and forever with each breathing
(i do not know what it is about you that closes
and opens;only something in me understands
the voice of your eyes is deeper than all roses)
nobody,not even the rain,has such small hands
Your health and your life are in YOUR hands. You determine how well you will live. Ask yourself, are there changes that I need to make in my life to improve my health? And if I continue on this same trajectory will it take me to where I want to be in 1 year.....3 years....5 years....etc. We have a weight loss program at our clinic that has proven to be very successful at helping people change their lives.....and it is more than just weight loss that occurs. It is a life changing process. It is a way of thinking differently about food and exercise and a way of living where you see the healthier choices you can make that will benefit you and the planet we live on. You see......you change your life when you change your mind! So I thought I would share some of the anti-aging tips with you....and maybe plant a seed.
Additional Tips for Successful Weight loss
1. Drink ½ to 1 gallon of water a day
2. Walk an hour a day (or 10,000 steps)
3. 2 organic apples daily
4. 2 organic grapefruits daily
5. Raw Organic Apple Cider Vinegar
6. Drink green tea
7. Whole Food Supplement
8. Coral Calcium
9. Eat Breakfast
10. Eat Six Times Per Day (small meals)
11. Eat Dinner Before 6 pm
12. Eat Protein Before Bed
13. Eat Hot Peppers
14. Use Cinnamon
15. Eat Salad With Lunch and Dinner
16. No Trans Fat
17. No High Fructose Corn Syrup
18. Avoid Artificial Sweeteners
19. No MSG
20. No nitrites
21. Limit Carbonated Beverages
22. Limit Ice Cold Beverages
23. No Fast Food!!
24. Eat 100% Organic Food
25. Use Natural Sweeteners
26. Infrared Sauna
27. Get Sun
28. Get Some Sleep
32. Chamomile tea
33. Listen to Destressing CDs
34. Add fiber
35. Lift weights
What do you think about work? Do you only work your 8 hours to get to the end of a day and ultimately the end of the week? To the TGIF? Just can't wait till the weekend gets here and dread when Monday morning rolls around?
Well, I say to you.....you are in the wrong job. This existence is too short to go through wishing the time away. We should work, and work hard each day. It will give us a sense of accomplishment and satisfaction. And it doesn't really matter if you receive accolades from the outside (i.e. "pats on the back") you still need to give that 100% of yourself for yourself. Too many people cheat the system, giving only the minimum required and don't really put all they have into the job they were paid to do.
I am in the health care industry. And I often wonder when I am treated badly by someone I am doing business with like a plumber or the mechanic fixing my car....if he were in my office and I were giving him the same caliber of treatment he was giving to me how would he like it. The answer is probably not at all. And besides....I could not do that. I have too much self respect and pride in my job. And although, professional liability is a factor, it is not the only reason that I give 100% at work. It is because I care about what I do and how I do it.
Retirement age has been moved to age 67. I am glad of that because so many times I see people who are doing very well and then after they retire their health suddenly starts to deteriorate. And within a few years (and many times less) they die. Because they have nothing to get up for, nothing to live for. Life loses it's spark for them.
So I think that retirement is overrated. For what it's worth.......
THE HIGHEST REWARD FOR A PERSON'S TOIL IS NOT WHAT THEY GET FOR IT, BUT WHAT THEY BECOME BY IT.
NEVER TURN DOWN A JOB BECAUSE YOU THINK IT'S TOO SMALL; YOU DON'T KNOW WHERE IT CAN LEAD.
WHERE EVER YOU ARE, BE TOTALLY THERE.
YOUR KEY TO FREEDOM LIES IN THE POWER TO CONTROL YOUR THOUGHTS.
And with that I sign off respectfully,