Tomorrow Is A New Day
There is a lot of talk around the internet, books, magazines, tv, everywhere you look, about living minimalistic, being uncluttered, consuming less, being more productive, being happy. As our world gets more complicated, more stressful, we work more, earn more, spend more, have less. The world our parents dreamed of for us, as their generation created the technology that would work for us, give us more leisure time, make our lives easier, hasn’t come to be. Instead we use the technology to make ourselves even busier, using our down time to stay connected through smartphones and netbooks and tablets.
I can’t help but think that as we strive to unclutter our houses, streamline our lives, that the most important thing to free of debris is our mind. I’ve struggled for months to find the motivation to unclutter, to get organised, to get things done. And then I made some small changes with big decisions, and my brain was suddenly clear. Some of the things that had been bogging me down, the guilt and recriminations and negativity of how I was spending my time versus how I wanted to be, were gone. And suddenly I could start doing all the things that had been such a chore.
It all sounds so simple when the experts tell you to be happy, live minimally, get things done by being organised and doing things. But what does it all mean? How do we get there? I remember, years ago, when the realisation came to me (watching Oprah funnily enough) that I wasn’t just going to wake up one day and be happy, that there wasn’t some magical thing that would happen in my life (new house, new car, new job, new partner) that would suddenly make me happy. I’d never learned that I needed to do the hard work, that my happiness could only ever come from me.
The idea of living with an aware mind sounds like something that should be easy. Just pay attention, right? But the experience of trying to force my mind to be what I want has shown me otherwise. I’ve wanted for months (years?) to get back into meditating, yoga, regular exercise, anything that requires focus and dedication. Perhaps I needed to be ready, maybe I just needed time. Maybe I needed to learn how to just be.
I’ve spent so long afraid, of making decisions, of being alone, of not being good enough, of not being wanted, of doing the wrong thing, of not doing the right thing, of how people see me, of what people think of me, that I stopped moving altogether. Still as a statue, frozen in place. I love Ralph Waldo Emerson’s quote… ‘Finish each day and be done with it. You have done what you could. Learn from it. Tomorrow is a new day.’. I learned valuable lessons from every decision I’ve ever made, good or bad. Living is about learning and no regrets.
I must not fear.
Fear is the mind-killer.
Fear is the little-death that brings total obliteration.
I will face my fear.
I will permit it to pass over me and through me.
And when it has gone past I will turn the inner eye to see its path.
Where the fear has gone there will be nothing.
Only I will remain.