The past year has most definitely been one of big changes. The year began for me in Australia, taking a break from the English winter, spending some time with my relatives there and taking some time to finish my book, ‘the happiness proposal’, which incidently, is now due out Spring 2012. Lots happened there, but one thing stands out as being particularly monumental…
gifts you really need, even if you don’t want them
In January I had an email from a reader who was going to unsubscribe because she felt my articles were self-centred, and had too many ‘I’s in them. She told me that our purpose here on earth was to transcend the ego, and I was obviously not doing that. Ouch. I noticed my reaction. Hurt by her words. Anxious that she might be voicing the opinions of many. And I was concerned she might be right. Had I been too bold to think that sharing my personal journey of transformation was an act of service? Was I too selfish to work in self-help? A whole load of questions were set in motion.
After the initial reaction, I remembered to thank the spirit for the gift in this experience, and set about unwrapping it. And pretty quickly I realised that on one level she was right. I do love to talk and write, and particularly enjoy it when it’s about me. And even more so when it’s about something I’ve been through in terms of learning, evolving, healing and revealing stuff that was blocking my awareness of who I am. (The process of which, is my passion.)
The more I started looking at what I was feeling ‘bad’ about, the more I saw that the things I could be lambasted for were actually my gifts. The world needs violets as much as it needs sunflowers. And me, being a leo, consider myself to be a sunflower. As Ewan McGregor so eloquently sang from the rooftops in Moulin Rouge, ‘my gift is my song’. And my song is everything I do, my writing, my poems, my one-to-ones, my tours and… something else. I realised that instead of feeling reprimanded for loving the limelight, I could embrace it. In fact I could pour my energy into like never before and fulfil a dream of mine that, as a result of this one email, was now exploding like a bottle of vigorously shaken champers. I wanted to be a TV presenter. I needed to try it.
Why? Because doing work that expresses who you are in the world, right work that makes your spirit soar, IS an act of service. It changes things. It transforms your karmas and strengthens the parts of you in need of healing. And god damn it woman-of-the-scary-email, THANK-YOU for reminding me! If it hadn’t been for your prompt, I wouldn’t have taken that course in TV presenting in March when I got back to the UK. Nor would I have started working with Positive TV this year and had an amazing time creating and presenting enlightening, informative shows!
The gift held in that not-so-nice email was huge. It shaped the course of the year ahead, and perhaps the rest of my life. Who knows. But what I loved most of all was the reminder that we don’t always get what we want (I’d have preferred an email showering me with verbal applause) but we will always get what we need. Spirit is absolutely brilliant at that. Every time. (Remembering it in the spike of the moment though is another matter entirely.)
So next time life gives you a gift you’d rather not receive, see if you can unwrap it and see what it’s really giving you. Decide to ride the waves of your reaction as best you can, and look beneath appearances. Even if you have to shelve it for a few weeks or months before you can look at it, accept it anyway. For it’s only through accepting the present, as it is, that we start to see the magic each moment is always offering us.
And of course I wish you many, many wonderful-to-receive gifts too. They don’t all have to hurt. x