As we become grownups, many of us set aside the soul-wide and wonder-shot participation in the world that we knew as children. The social screws that hold the hinges of our behavior are drilled early on, causing us to keep that really gritty human part of us closed off and separate. Tamed and tautened, meted out and close-fitted, we learn to do life with our inner selves throttled back.
Our hearts and souls get wrapped in a "politically correct" cellophane that gently begins to smother our innate urge to love, to cry, to reach out, to laugh and to touch. We fear what others will think or how they will react. Stifled and muffled, we function in a quiet desperation so entrenched that it becomes our "normal." We forget what it feels like to truly honor and relish our humanity -- to hold our own hearts close and let our spirits grow wide and free, curious and strong.
We are strangers in the land of ourselves. We get uncomfortable when our inner voice raises its hand wanting to put messy questions on the table. So we shut this voice down and torque our fears quiet. "I shouldn't feel this way. I'll feel better tomorrow. It doesn't really matter." This silencing of our selves chokes our spirit and squashes flat the song notes of our inner joy. Our days become a playact of emotional self-denial and germ-free interactions. Then we get up and do it all over again. We are too afraid or too numb to ask the questions that truly matter: What the hell am I really doing? Does this really make any sense? Who is that person in the mirror?
We have an empty hole in our gut where an intimate and powerful connection to ourselves belongs. So we fill this hole with hoarding and gorging, drinking and drugging, sleeping and shopping, fornicating and exercising, earning and owning, tattooing and butt-tucking, traveling and running, hiding and stumbling. And all the while we are blaming ourselves, "Something is wrong with me. I am so alone. No one else feels like this."
The truth is that we really aren't alone, and we never have been. The person beside us feels just like we do. They have the same needs and fears, laughter and yearning, wants and desires. But we have sanitized our humanness to a Barbie-and-Ken-doll existence, so we say nothing to one another. We don't want to let our words get real or put our not-always-okay selves on the line. We are too scared. Or, we don't know how. So we continue as we are -- quietly disappointed and spirit lost.
It's time for us to put our hearts and souls out there. Let's talk about how we really feel and share what we really think. Let's start doing something about our achings and our hurts, our not-yet dreams and our knowing-things-can-be-different imaginings. What's the worst that can happen? We get disapproving comments or people walk away. We get raised eyebrows or embarrassed silences.
What's the best that can happen? Life! We get to start really living our own lives. We get to understand -- and truly embrace -- the beauty and wonder, the curiosity and joy, the glory and the gift of who we really are. We are remarkable and amazing creatures, we human beings. And, we are here on this earth for such a very short time. We are meant to do this life heart-honest, soul-wide and lovingly brave. Yes, we are.
To learn about her new book, "Soul on the Run," go to: www.SoulOnTheRun.com.