Augusts Insights for Impact is a little longer than usual, with lots of food for reflection. Best enjoyed somewhere green, with time and space to think and digest. Enjoy!
The irony of the word perfect...
The notion of perfection is often used in our society as some kind of aspirational barometer, or indeed judging stick to beat ourselves with. If we pursue external, unsustainable, impossible types of perfection, we welcome pointless suffering into our lives. But we can instead acknowledge that from an inner perspective, in our search for perfection, really we are striving for peace. For the quietness in ourselves that comes from a sense of harmony, integration, completeness, purity of alignment, depth of connection. If perfection is an inside job and is defined by quality of experience rather than external achievement, we open ourselves to creating aligned, self-designed, perfect FOR US standards.
People can be fine and still need a hug. People can be on top of the world and still need to have their friends around.
People can need company, alone time, hugs, space, and anything in between and still feel happy, sad, upside down or inside out. We need to stop following simplistic Disney style equations when it comes to feelings and needs and honour every unique combination there is. Because that is humanity. That is where the magic happens. That is where compassion and love lie. In the beautiful greyness of being.
"You must be prepared to work always without applause." - Ernest Hemingway
Recognition is a bonus rather than a requirement. This does not mean we do not as humans need encouragement, support, and validation. Rather it means that the only opinion and praise that will truly nourish us is our own, when we are following our inner knowing.
Recognition can feel wonderful, but if the desire for that is core to our actions, the work itself, whatever it is, will not be the truest expression of what we could create. To do our best work is to orient to the work itself.
"The less we think about what others might be considering or judging about us, the more likely we can live the story that our own soul came here to unfold" - Michael Meade
When we look at ourselves through the eyes of others, not only do we deplete our focus and energy, we walk away with nothing but a set of assumptions and sometimes even harmful beliefs. Time spent inhabiting ourselves and diving into the richness of our insides is an act of love and understanding which only we can give to ourselves.
Safety doesn't mean lack of risk, it means having enough support to navigate challenge and change.
Safety is really living sustainably, with support systems that are fit for purpose both internally and externally. We all have a window of tolerance for uncertainty, and the bigger the window, the more freedom of movement we can enjoy. When was the last time you did a support audit? Tuning in to who and what can and can't hold us, and how that helps (or limits us) as we move through the world enables us to see where to tap. Having the right support allows us to look at life from a place of gratitude, and enjoy a bigger sense of freedom and connection. If we find gaps, knowing what and where they are and their impacts can guide us to prioritising our own care.