To Be More or Not To Be More

With all due apologies to Shakespeare, that is the real question. At least it is for me.

I already am a being. I already am being, so nothing to question there. But, am I ready and willing to be more?

One of my daily rituals is asking what my purpose is. This morning I received one of the shortest answers I’ve ever gotten. To be more.

The simplicity of that purpose felt refreshing and freeing. I’m often looking for exact things to be, actions to take, missions to be a part of. Sometimes it can leave me feeling like whatever I’ve done so far hasn’t been correct or I’ve missed my best opportunities. If I keep asking the question, I must not know my purpose.

Shine onI’ve spent what feels like a lifetime battling thoughts of not being enough. You can insert any word before enough too; young, old, thin, fat, smart, rich… With my history of tormenting, self-judgment, and depressive thinking, can I feel I’m enough to enjoy myself and my life right here and now and ALSO be willing to be more?

Can I be more of a good person, an authentic man, a loving partner, a caring friend, an open-hearted healer, an inspiring writer and speaker, a more empathic human… Can I be more of the of the Love and the Light I experience in meditation and healings? Yes. I’m sure of it.

Life is about more. Change is the only constant in life.

In working with the Akashic Records, a common message is that there is more, we are entitled and worthy of more.

  • More is good.
  • More is expansive.
  • More is progress.

The universe is expanding at an accelerating rate because we, all of us human beings, are expanding too. I don’t mean our waistlines. I’m referring to our expansive desires, thoughts, goals, and actions. So you could say that we all have a very important role; to keep being more so that the universe continues to grow.

I believe our potential is unlimited. I think we can all be more, without it being an indictment of where we are currently. Pursuing more doesn’t mean there is anything wrong with this moment. Wanting more doesn’t mean you aren’t enough right now.

The challenge, for me and many others I meet, is the willingness to do the work. To look deep within ourselves. To call ourselves out when we are choosing to be less than our best. To admit, with compassion, when we are choosing to step backward instead of forwards.

Sharing this is one way I’m attempting to step forward. I hope you’ll join me in being more of all your greatest aspects.

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Emotions and Vacations

Everybody loves vacations, right?

Apparently not, since 47% of Americans didn’t take all of their vacation time in 2017 and 21% left more than five available vacation days up for grabs.

Above the Treasury at Petra

Above the iconic Treasury at Petra, Jordan.

My wife and I recently returned home for a two week trip to the Middle East, spending one week in Israel and the next week in Jordan. The rock-carved city of Petra was the main reason behind the trip. But both countries had a lot to offer and warrant repeat visits.

We had a fantastic time full of ancient sites, sacred places, and friendly people. I learned a lot about the religion and politics of the area and found I had many misconceptions about the Middle East from growing up in the US. My time in Israel was probably the most intellectually and politically challenging trip I’ve taken. We talked with Arabs, Jews, Christians, Muslims, Palestinians, Isralies, and Jordanians.

Toward the final days, I noticed moments of sadness that things were winding down.

The sadness was mixed with a feeling that two weeks was long enough and I was ready to return home. I recalled years earlier when it was normal for me to feel depressed with days remaining of a vacation because I so dreaded my return to daily life.

Some people like vacations of sitting on the beach and doing nothing. I prefer active holidays where I do things I don’t usually do, especially when I worked as a cube dweller for corporate America.

When I tried to just lay on the beach in the past, my thoughts would turn negative. I’d focus on all the things I didn’t like instead of relaxing. Then I’d drink to remove those thoughts. That worked in the short term, but if I just wanted to drink, I could do that at home much cheaper, so I quickly stopped those sort of trips too.

I’ve visited such places as Machu Pichu, Stonehenge, and Easter Island. I’ve been white water rafting, rappelling, and hiking in Europe, South America, and Africa. A staycation can be nice, but my favorite vacations are ones when I need another vacation to recover from them.

Floating in the Dead Sea

Floating in the Dead Sea

Even today, I can recall being in the jungles of Belize in 2005, but feeling very down because the following Monday I’d be back at work. It was a time that I thought I hated my job, and sometimes my life. Yet, a few days prior, I was enjoying myself and life.

These realizations helped me learn the power of being present.

When fully present, I felt better. I wondered why was it that I was time traveling in my thinking.

Why was I ignoring the fantastic experiences I was having to jump forward to my return to the mundane?

I decided that since I could be full of energy and joy on a vacation when I was present and focused on what I was doing, that I would do my best to live like I was on vacation. All the time.

I did pretty well at that for a long time. Treating each day like it was new. Looking for things that were unusual, special, and fun. If those weren’t apparent, I find a way to bring those elements to what I was doing.

The Western Wall

The Western Wall, or Wailing Wall, in the Old City of Jerusalem.

So as I noticed some sadness as this trip was winding down, I explored what exactly I was feeling sad about.

I was going to miss the people. We were a group of 13 in Israel and then 16 in Jordan. I liked my instant family of global citizens traveling, sharing, dining together for long days full of once in a lifetime experiences.

Back home, I often work in isolation. I sometimes forget to admit to myself that I actually like people. I was going to miss having a guide take me to amazing new places every day. I was going to miss having every day planned by someone else when I just needed to show up and be marveled. I would miss walking into restaurants and recognizing a dozen faces. There was no responsibility or stress. Just being present and amazed.

Realizing that I was sad over what was ending as opposed to what I was returning to, made me smile.

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