On New Year’s Eve, in a circle of friends and family, we took turns seeing what words bubbled up to the surface. Challenging, exhilarating, progress, complicated, sunny, thankful, persevering were a few.
This morning my own fourth word came forward: Yearning. Was yearning part of your year too?
Looking back, I had very specific chapters with very specific desires. I also had an overarching fuzzy sense of yearning that I know sometimes felt restless or stagnant; other times it propelled me forward, even though I can’t name where I landed. Yearning can be intense. It produces energy inside of us that seeps into the world.
This week my yoga teacher, Sean Haleen, shared the yogic philosophy that we are constantly creating, sustaining or destroying. I started to think about which category yearning falls into.
I believe yearning can hold any of these energies. Looking back on your year, did you act on any desires that brought something positive into the world or brought good energy to those around you?
How much energy did you expend to protect or maintain something about yourself or something sacred to you. Most importantly, can you see when going towards your yearnings were at the cost or destruction of others?
Let me give you a simple example. This week I had a huge yearning to clean, purge and start fresh in the new year. I became more and more intense as I pushed my daughters to be a part of the one-day house cleansing. It was a very real yearning that had been brewing within me.
My youngest daughter knows when this yearning surfaces and always asks that I at least let her shut her bedroom door while she cleans (so she doesn’t absorb my energy). I couldn’t help myself. I had to check her progress. I knocked to ask permission. On her dresser top, she strategically piled a bunch of her stuff onto a tray.
I eyed a hammer and gently asked, "Aria do you need this hammer or can I take it downstairs?"
She barked back with a twinkle in her eye, "Yes I need my hammer to hit you over the head when I don't like your parenting style!"
My desire to create a fresh start, was actually more destructive than productive. The only thing I was creating was stress in my daughter.
This is a natural time to start moving your yearnings forward with fresh hope and energy.
My wish for you is to live out your yearnings in ways that feel empowering, purposeful, fun, and brave . . . to live out your yearnings in ways that mindfully feed life around you and nurture what you treasure most.
Blessing in 2014!