The Year That Was… – The Broad Place

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The Year That Was…

I personally felt that 2016 was incredible. Incredibly inspiring and incredibly trying. When things heighten, they heighten on all fronts. I have found it unusual for it to be all ‘good’ at one time, there’s always challenges mixed in there to the same volume. My intrigue and curiosity reached new heights, and so did my frustrations. The love I experienced reached depths I hadn’t known possible, and also my anger, that sometimes brewed hot inside of me to the point I feared myself. I felt I expanded so much, and then contracted also. Then expanded again, and contracted again. I was like a rubber band, and sometimes the sting of the snap back burned hard. My empathy and compassion in some areas were vivid, and in other areas of my life I could witness myself being quite the cold bitch about it all. I was utterly present and patient over here, and then impatient and verging on throwing a tantrum over there. In truth on a few occasions, much to Arran’s horror, I stomped my feet like a 3 year old mid meltdown. Then there were these lengthy periods where I felt such deep joy, like a vibration that ran through absolutely everything. A lightness and a humour that made everything shimmer with aliveness. But then flat again I would fall on my face in exhaustion and the glimmer of life would suddenly seem a little duller.

This roller coaster I felt ashamed of at times, like I was supposed to be more ‘spiritual’ and more equanimous. But here’s the thing, when we turn up the volume, we do just that to it all. We can dim and numb, but we do it to all emotions. There’s no emotional switchboard we can flick on happiness, joy, compassion and gratitude, and flick off sadness, anger and resentment. But it’s what we do with the emotions that count. It’s all a choice. We forget frequently that absolutely everything comes with a choice, even which emotions to engage with. We are never actually ‘choiceless’ even if we feel that way.

It’s always a retrospective time of year for me and as Christmas closes off, I am pondering where I feel the year went well, and where I felt I could have responded over reacting, where I could have not shied away from something, and where I could have pulled back. I feel this year lacked a rhythm to it, as I sprinted through some months, and lazied through others. I took 2.5 months off, yet also worked more ferociously than ever. I was driven by passion for sharing and teaching more that I ever have, in an all encompassing fire, but in truth also ego played a part, as I was trying to prove something undefinable to myself. That I could push the limits and be okay. I did push and I was okay, but it always comes at a cost doesn’t it. A cost I’m no longer prepared to absorb.

I’m going to pen a little something every day until New Years to stimulate thinking for you, and what I am putting my attention on each day as we close off the year. Hindsight is a beautiful gift of the mind, and in order to really expand, sometimes it’s important to sit with where we contracted, so that we can understand ourselves better, and shine awareness on it so that next time we can choose expansion.To start, join me in thinking about…

Where do you feel this last year you were bright and engaged, and where you shut down emotionally to cope, turning down the volume on your own potential to grow by refusing to accept your human-ness?

What preconceived ideas did you have about who you should be (like my being more ‘spiritual’ and less emotional) and who would you be if you let go of them?

Where did you do more Doing than Being (like when I moved from being inspired to teach into trying to prove something to myself). There’s a VAST difference, and sometimes it shifts so quickly that unless we are being hyper vigilant, we just can’t see it.

Jac x

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