~ Excerpt from Heather McCloskey Beck's new book, Take the Leap ~
I welcome in the beauty of quiet, allowing myself to be calm and
at ease. I value the gift of solitude as I allow my creative self to
retreat from the busy-ness of living, into my own personal space
of peace and grace.
Do you ever just sit down in a quiet place and allow yourself to simply Be, without looking at a magazine or listening to music, without watching television or reading a book? Do you ever just find a calm place and invite yourself to not think a conscious thought, but rather, allow yourself to drift and relax into not doing anything at all? The truth is, this is a very important thing to do, yet somehow we don't seem to give ourselves this kind of downtime. Taking time for ourselves is often viewed as selfish by those who want our constant attention, but as we awaken to our creative Essence and begin to live a life that Calls to us, we will soon discover that creating solitude is a life-saving act.
Solitude is the state of being alone and away from others, without feeling any sense of regret, guilt, or loneliness. Spending time in solitude is highly self-nurturing and a practice that we all need to embrace. When we are so busy with the hectic activities of our lives and constantly giving our time away to others, we become depleted and worn down when we don't take the time to fill ourselves back up. Running on empty can only last for so long. Just as we need to refuel our vehicles that get us from here to there, so we must also refuel ourselves in mind, body, and spirit, so that we may be happy, productive, and healthy. Yes, we want to be generous and kind in our caring for those we love, but as we were reminded earlier on, we must be sure to put our own oxygen mask on first, before we can possibly help anyone else around us.
Spending time in solitude is highly self-nurturing and a
practice that we all need to embrace.
We need to learn to value ourselves and not slip into a misguided mindset that it is a virtuous thing to be present for everyone else while abandoning our own needs. When we discover that what we want to do conflicts with the desires of those we care for, and we continually defer to their wants and needs, eventually we will become duly frustrated and angry inside. Over time, if we continue to put ourselves last, we are going to experience an emotional concussion or suffer a slow, tedious death of spirit, by perpetually living a life of compromise and mediocrity. We must become aware that if we continue to function in this way, we are putting ourselves at risk of losing our essential individuality to the wants and needs of others, and this is a very unwise and debilitating thing to do.
Solitude is an essential ingredient within every human being's life. Yet how many of us are really comfortable being alone, without distractions and activities that keep us engaged and busy? We need time to be by ourselves, so that we may relax, reflect, and create a sense of peace within. We need time alone so that we can examine our lives, to see what must go and what we want to stay. It is important to clear out the clutter that is taking up space in our lives and begin to thoughtfully introduce doing things that we truly love to do. Taking the time to think on these things is a very important step, and we must be very careful not to allow anyone or anything to get in its way.
When we begin to make changes in our lives, it is a common occurrence for those around us to not be supportive and encouraging of what we are doing. They may feel threatened that we are changing, feeling as though we are leaving them behind and excluding them from being front and center in our lives. We may find that some will try to sabotage what we are doing or try to entice us away from our new personal mission. All the same, it is essential to take the time and space for this private, internal reflection, even when we don't feel that we know what we are doing. It is when we begin something new and focus our energy and intention on that action, while disallowing others to pull us off-track, that we will experience an unseen force that seems to help us on our way. Perhaps it is our Guide who has our back, encouraging us to stay on our path, and as Ralph Waldo Emerson insightfully said, "To be yourself in a world that is constantly trying to make you something else, is the greatest accomplishment."
The bottom line is, we have to just do it.
Heather McCloskey Beck's new book, Take the Leap, will be available in all book stores and online, in both print and digital formats, on October 1st, 2013.
It is currently available on Amazon here ---> http://dld.bz/TakeTheLeap_Amazon
Heather's Amazon Author Bio: http://amazon.com/Author/HeatherMccloskeyBeck
Follow Heather on her Facebook Pages here: http://www.facebook.com/HeatherMcCloskeyBeckAuthor